Govt planning to officialise Khoi, San languages
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The Pan South African Languages Board (PanSALB) has begun a process that will facilitate the officialisation and development of all Khoi and San languages.
Arts and Culture Paul Mashatile made the announcement during the presentation of the base line study on the Khoi and San Heritage Route in Kimberly on Friday.
"As part of promoting and preserving the heritage of the Khoi and San people, the Pan South African Languages Board has begun a process that will facilitate the officialisation and development of all Khoi and San languages.
"In our view, the time to officialise these languages is long overdue. This process must therefore begin now.
"PanSALB will be embarking on a national consultative process to mobilise the country as a whole behind the goal of officialising all the Khoi and San languages," he said.
Mashatile said government was doing this to return the dignity of the Khoi and San people, reiterating that they too were full citizens of a free South Africa.
The minister said the Khoi and San Heritage Route would help government to integrate the Khoi and San heritage into the broader cultural heritage of the country, adding that it would transform the heritage landscape of the country.
He said it would also strengthen efforts to ensure that the stories reflecting the Khoi and San heritage are part of the country’s new and inclusive narrative, of where the nation come from and where it is heading.
"The study will also help preserve the Khoi and San heritage, their indigenous knowledge systems, their languages and their ways of life.
"We will use the study to start a process that will culminate in the development of the National Khoi and San Heritage Route; where we identify sites, events and individuals that are of significance to the Khoi and San heritage," he said.
Mashatile said the study was a comprehensive one covering Khoi and San heritage sites in all the nine provinces.
He said members of the Khoi and San communities were involved in the study, allowing them to tell their own stories in their own words.
The minister said although he was satisfied with the process of the study so far, he reiterated that the door was not closed for additions to the study.
Mashatile said he expected the Khoi and San Heritage Route to contribute significantly to advancing the socio-economic development of the affected communities. - SAnews.gov.za
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