Schools throughout the country will on Monday mark Africa Day by singing the African Union (AU) Anthem during assembly.
The Department of Basic Education said a ministerial directive has been issued to all provincial education departments to instruct schools across the country to call special assemblies at 8am on 25 May 2015.
Africa Day is the annual commemoration of the 1963 founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), presently recognised as the Africa Union (AU).
The AU, which comprises 53 member states, aims to promote greater unity and solidarity between African countries as well as accelerate the political and socio-economic integration of Africa.
The AU is also at the forefront of the drive for peace, security and stability on the continent.
During the State of the Nation Address in February, President Zuma announced that “from this year, schools must also practise the African Union anthem, in preparation for the celebration of Africa Month in May, as we implement the African Union decision in this regard.”
The department said it supports all efforts to highlight the importance South Africa places on the implementation of resolutions made at the AU.
“The objective of the initiative is to teach the children in South African schools about the AU mandate, symbols and anthem. The department has a roll-out plan for the distribution and teaching of the AU symbols and anthem in schools nationally.
“The need to conscientise and instil pride and patriotism in the children of South Africa to their African heritage regardless of their race, cannot be overemphasized.
“We owe it our children to highlight linkages between South Africa and other African countries through the AU,” the department said in a statement.
Integral part of the Continent
South Africa recognises itself as an integral part of the African continent, therefore learners must be taught to understand that South Africa’s national interests are naturally linked to Africa’s stability, unity, and prosperity.
Schools throughout the country will also have an opportunity to sing the AU anthem during the South African Schools Choir Eisteddfod (SASCE) competitions presently taking place in provinces and districts.
“These are some of the efforts made at ensuring that the children of South Africa learn the AU anthem and show the commitment that South Africa places on its membership of the AU, and to the implementation of each and every resolution and declaration that are taken at various meetings of the AU and its organs,” said the department.
Members of the public are also encouraged, in support of the learners, to learn the AU anthem and symbols.
The anthem is downloadable from the Thutong Portal on the Department of Basic Education website and websites of other government departments.
“Our collective effort will go a long way in eliminating events of the past weeks when foreign nationals were attacked and displaced,” the department said. eded
Source : SAnews.gov.za