Let all lan­guages be el­e­vated

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - COMMENT -

IN THE cur­rent lan­guage de­bate one finds Afrikaans-speak­ing peo­ple are fight­ing for their mother tongue while speak­ers of other African lan­guages are, sur­pris­ingly, fight­ing for English!

Why “sur­pris­ingly”? If one re­ally wants to dig up old graves: Bri­tain was the big­gest coloniser of all time, which means English is the lan­guage of the big­gest op­pres­sor in his­tory.

Afrikaans, which means “lan­guage of Africa”, de­vel­oped spon­ta­neously over cen­turies. To­day it is ar­guably the most aca­dem­i­cally and tech­ni­cally ad­vanced of all in­dige­nous African lan­guages. I have a dream that the other of­fi­cial lan­guages be el­e­vated to the same aca­demic level as Afrikaans, ed­u­cat­ing peo­ple in their mother tongue. Is this achiev­able? As they say, “Where there is a will there is a way.”

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