This morning, Tuesday, 24 January 2023, marks the beginning of the African Languages Week. This is an annual one- week long major event organized to promote African languages by all member state of African Union.
The African Language Week was launched in July 2021, in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso by the African Academy of Languages (ACALAN), to empower African languages and promote their use in all domains of society. This significant programme is aimed at commemorating the relevance of African languages and cultures in Africa and the African diaspora, as a special moment of African identity and in celebrating African patrimony and heritage.
The celebration provides opportunities to showcase and promote cultures across the continent of Africa, and most importantly, to reflect on African languages and their development as factor of peace, prosperity and integration in Africa.
As Africa continent is said to be the most linguistically diverse continent of the world. It is therefore critical that the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB) recognizes this special event and celebration, to remind the nation of who we are as Africans.
“This is a special event, not only to us in South Africa, but also to the entire globe, as it will increase awareness and appreciation of African languages by looking at pragmatic ways of empowering and rendering them relevant to the lives of Africans, promote the dynamic of African worldviews and philosophies of life through the empowerment and use of African languages, demonstrate the indispensable role of African languages in the integration and sustainable peace and development of Africa”. said the PanSALB chief executive officer, Mr Lance Schultz.