Nali’bali , The South African national Reading-For-Enjoyment campaign, has called for the support of African languages in recognition of International Mother Language Day on Sunday.

Nali’bali has launched a campaign highlighting the critical lack of books available in all African languages to children in South Africa.

A publishers’ report shows that of all books published in South Africa between the years 2000 and 2015, 40 per cent were in English, 24 per centin Afrikaans and just 6.0 per cent were in the isiXhosa and isiZulu languages.

The Executive Director of Alternative Education in South Africa, Carol Bloch, said: “If you are somebody who wants to read in an African language, you are going to run out because we just have not developed children’s literature in African languages.

“It’s not unique to South Africa; we know this is in large part due to the language policies that have been carried out.”

Meanwhile, young people say the current generation of young South Africans should learn their mother tongues properly to keep their culture and traditions alive.

An event has been held in Cape Town to emphasise the importance of all eleven official languages with about 200 young people gathering at the Castle of Good Hope to highlight diversity

Source: SABC