African languages should be at the center of educational and cultural achievement

At his farewell speech as the chairman of the African Union in 2004, Mozambique’s then-president Joaquim Chissano surprised African leaders by delivering his remarks in Swahili. At the time, the AU was only using English, Portuguese, Arabic, and French as its official languages—and government officials caught unawares, scrambled to find translators.

Chissano’s historic speech constituted the first time that the African body permitted the use of an African language in its meetings.

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