"Better to use a language that is widely spoken across the globe"

Felly Kimenyi , Gasabo, for The New Times (Kigali)
15 October 2008:

President Paul Kagame yesterday stressed the urgency in the process of using English as a medium of education in all Rwandan schools, saying it is a choice Rwandans have to make if they need development.

He said this while visiting Ecole Primaire d'Application de Kimihurura (EPAK), a primary school located in Kimihurura, Gasabo District.

"The kind of education we want for our children is that which is in line with the vision in place for the development of our country we have to prioritise the language that will make them competent when they get on the labour market after completing school," the President said while meeting the teaching staff of the school.

He said that it is better to use a language that is widely spoken across the globe as Rwanda tries to reach as many countries for business opportunities.

"For example, in our region apart from Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a French speaker going to the other countries would have to use the services of an interpreter," he said.

He added that even in Europe, of the more than 20 States that make up the continent, there are not more than three where the French language is spoken.

"In the rest of the countries, no one will have time for you if you speak French," Kagame pointed out.

A cabinet meeting last week directed the Ministry of Education to expedite the programme that will make English the medium of education in all government-funded schools right from primary level to institutions of higher learning.

According to minutes of the meeting, the major reason for this is to make Rwanda more competitive in both the East African Community and the International Community at large.

"We have to make a choice on language depending on which languages the countries we stand to benefit from most use," said Kagame.

The President also emphasized that the major reason is not to just master the English language but the knowledge to be gained in other disciplines like sciences.


kecke said...

Better to seek advice at Rwandans who know the situation in Rwanda better than Francophobe web pages.
An extraordinary comment on the circumstances of the linguistic change which never has been the result of a democratic debate:


Unfrench said...

Kecke, you're not helping your point by failing to provide a proper link to that video. You know, this kind of ignorance, this lack of know-how makes you supporters of the French cause look like Neanderthals, creatures incapable of adjusting to modernity, too old-fashioned to survive. Just for your information, you need to use html code "a href=" to post links on Blogger. Click Here for more details on this.

Another thing. German academics used to speak and write excellent French. Your French, however, is even worse than your English. It defeats your purpose when the appeal of the French language is not enough to make you take the time and effort to learn it properly, don't you think? There you have the problem of la Francophonie in a nutshell: all that the French language has going for it these days is past prestige, which, to a huge majority of students, isn't much of a motivation to learn a foreign language. I think the little Rwandans will agree.

kecke said...

How are you able to evaluate my French? As a matter of fact I wrote in English, not in French. But you are likely to be so perfect and immaculate, that you will be canonized by the pope. Perhaps your English, your French, your Esperanto, your Chinese and even your programming skills may be better than mine. I don't care.

Your deficits are of quite a different nature. Arrogance and a lack of humbleness often use to tarnish intellectual capacities when people are not willing or able to hear arguments they don't like and simply reject.-
Mais Madame ou Monsieur, je loue votre engagement pour la pureté et la norme de la langue francaise. Vous prouvez que vous êtes un homme ou une femme de culture.
Au Revoir, le plus sage se retire.

Anonymous said...

"Adieu, dit le renard. Voici mon secret. Il est très simple: on ne voit bien qu'avec le coeur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux."

Lovelyhoney said...

I fully agree with Kecke, don't you think mister "perfect" unfrench.

"But you are likely to be so perfect and immaculate, that you will be canonized by the pope."

Unfrench Frenchman said...

It is not about perfection, but about being good at what you preach, ie credibility. Want to preach the use of French? Be proficient in French! Kecke obviously isn't.

And posting completely useless unformated URLs even though this blog's comment input field is surmounted by a link to a web page explaining how to format html links didn't help his argument either.