Awareness rose to promote Khoekhoegowab


The standing partnership between the Northern Cape Department of Education and the Namibian IIKharas Regional Council-Directorate of Education Arts and Culture has moved to the other level in a bid to save the Khoekhoegowab language. 


A total of 19 learners from Namibia accompanied by educators and officials toured the ZF Mgcwau and Namaqua districts to raise awareness on the development of Khoekhoegowab language at schools and communities.


Their seven (7) days long tour mainly focused in the deep rural areas whereby Khoekhoewab is still one of the preferred language of communication, amongst the areas the delegates toured include AJ Ferreira High School in Upington, they spent two (2) days in Riemvsmaak and concluded their tour by visiting the IKhubus community.


In all the areas they toured, Namibian learners brought all the communities alive whenever they took on the stage performing poetry, songs, dance and drama depicting the Nama culture and the Khoekhoewab language.


On his overall impression about their tour, expert and Khoekhoegowab language teacher Fritz Isak Dirks said he was impressed that the language has not totally faded away. He said he was impressed that people in the areas they visited still speaks the language.


“The language is still relevant to all the areas we went, but our mission now onwards will be to teach them how to write and read it, with our expertise in the language all that can be achieved”, Dirks said.


In addition Dirks said , “The Khoekhoegowab is one of the first indigenous language in South Africa, so with this  awareness we want remind the current generation about their place of origin. In all over the world indigenous people have been oppressed, the Khoekhoegowab language almost got extinct but with the South African government which have the interest of the people made sure that the language is being reintroduced to the communities”.


Northern Cape provincial twinning coordinator James Mapanka  said the main purpose of the visit was to inculcate  the sense of pride within the Nama communities, he said  that the Department is committed to do everything within the outline of the budget to help and establish the Nama language back in the curriculum again.


The twining agreement between the two (2) neighboring countries covers educational issues, fisheries, tourism, arts and culture and many more.


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