crowded african street /insider Public Policy 

Swahili is home to more than 100 million people today, small hope for Africa’s future

There are over a hundred languages spoken in Tanzania, but Swahili is spoken by 90% of the nation and is what unites the country’s 130 ethnic groups. Swahili, which is known colloquially as “Kiswahili”, is now used as the language of administration, and it is also widely used in schools and business. The growing popularity of the language outside Tanzania in the last two decades has largely been catapulted by music, which is breaking down cultural barriers across the region. In 2017, Tanzania became the first country in sub-Saharan Africa…

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In a continent with more than 2,000 distinct languages, the role and importance of indigenous African languages in post-colonial modern societies has also proved to be a contentious issue. Over the last few decades, the place of African languages has suffered negative consequences due to colonization, globalization, and the entrenchment of official languages like English and French. African languages have often been labeled as a hindrance to learning, and have suffered delegitimization at social, economic, and political spheres. Public Policy 

South African schools will teach Kiswahili to students from 2020

Africa’s most “internationally recognized language” will soon be taught in South African classrooms. Starting in 2020, schools will teach Kiswahili as an optional language, making it the first African language outside South Africa to be offered in class. Education minister Angie Motshekga said the move was meant to promote unity and “social cohesion with fellow Africans.” Anti-immigrant sentiments have brewed in South Africa in the past decade, leading to sporadic attacks on the homes and businesses of communities including Malawians, Somalis, and Nigerians. The push to embrace the Swahili language…

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