Why there might be more jobs for Swahili speakers in South Africa

A teacher and student during a Swahili lesson in a Rwandese school.Swahili will as from 2020 be introduced as an optional language taught in South African schools PHOTO COURTESY

There might more jobs for fluent Swahili speakers to work as Swahili teachers in South Africa.

This is after the Swahili language was approved to be taught as an optional in South African schools as from 2020.

According to the South African Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga, the introduction of Swahili to the education system will foster togetherness in Africa.

Swahili joins three foreign languages currently taught in South African schools which include Mandarin, German and French.

“Kiswahili is one of the most spoken languages in Africa after Arabic and English; and could expand to countries that have never spoken it before and as a result draw Africans closer together,” Motshekga said.

The minister also said that the language will help strengthen social cohesion between South Africa and other African nations as its one of the official languages of the African Union.

This comes just a month after fiery South African opposition leader Julius Malema said that making of Swahili as the official language of Africa would help ‘decolonize’ Africa from foreign languages.

“We must have a language which unites Africans.W e must do away with speaking with each other in English…” Malema was quoted by South African media.

Swahili will be the only African language not native to South Africa to be taught.

Last year Zimbabwe also introduced Swahili into its curriculum.

However, most Kiswahili teaching jobs require one to have a Bachelors degree in Education with a major in the Swahili language.

Swahili which is widely spoken in East and Central Africa is a national language in Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo.