Ministers, MPs Must take Kiswahili classes – Says Government

The government of Uganda is to partner with Makerere University to offer Kiswahili lectures to Members of Cabinet. This, after Uganda adopted Kiswahili as the second official language in the country. Cabinet sitting on Monday approved the implementation of the 21st East African Community (EAC) summit directive in Uganda to adopt Kiswahili as an official language of the community. While briefing press in Kampala on Thursday, the First deputy prime minister and East African Community affairs minister Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga revealed that government will work with Makerere university to offer online lectures for the Cabinet Members. She also said that Members of Parliament and the media are among the category that will be targeted first for this training before it is rolled out to the rest of the population. Kadaga said this is meant to help them be more conversant with the language.

“Makerere University is going to help us organise lessons first for the Cabinet Members. We have agreed that every Monday for the first one hour (9am-10am), we shall take lessons in Swahili and conduct our work afterwards until we are very proficient” Said Kadaga Kadaga notes that they choose Makerere University to champion this since it has many Kiswahili professors. The development comes months after the African Union, the apex organisation for African states, adopted Kiswahili as one of its official working languages, three months after the United Nations on November 23, 2021 designated July 7 as the World Kiswahili Language Day. Meanwhile, Kadaga urged Ugandans to change their attitude about the language since knowing an additional language is an advantage. Also Read IGG Beti Kamya Rushed to Hospital After Sudden Heart Attack before COSASE Meeting “We are going to work to motivate the people to make them understand that we can separate the past and look now at the future, the prospects for Africa and for our children. Much as I appreciate the fact that we have some work to do but it’s important that Ugandans go beyond one language.” She noted while responding to a question about the negative attitude some Ugandans have about the language. Uganda has experienced some of Africa’s harshest military dictatorships whose ruthless soldiers used Swahili a reason as to why some Ugandans dislike the language.

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