Media release

Government calls on South Africans to promote indigenous languages to commemorate Human Rights Day

20 March 2019

20 March 2019

This year, the national Human Rights Day celebrated annually on the 21st of March will draw attention to the critical importance of indigenous languages and emphasise the urgent need to preserve, revitalise and promote indigenous languages. The day will be observed under the theme “The Year of Indigenous Languages: Promoting and Deepening a Human Rights Culture”.

Government will host a national commemoration event of Human Rights Day on Thursday, 21 March 2019 at Sharpeville, Vereeniging, in the Gauteng Province.

Government calls on all South Africans from all walks of life in every part of the country to indelibly revive the commemorative celebrations of Human Rights Day as a milestone in the struggle for liberation. All citizens are urged to use their indigenous languages as part of the promotion and deepening of a human rights culture in honour of the heroes and heroines marchers.

Indigenous languages have the potential to promote equality, understanding and greater human dignity. Preserving and upholding our languages will keep them alive and help us connect with our history. All our languages are important and all citizens should fight to preserve them

“As we draw closer to Human Rights Day, let us remind ourselves of the significance of human rights and promote values, beliefs and attitudes that encourage all individuals to respect the rights of others.  Let us ensure that all South Africans without exception enjoy a right to use their language and participate in the cultural life of their choice”, said Phumla Williams.

Join the conversation on social media and share your messages or memories of Human Rights Day using the hashtags #HumanRightsDay #IndigenousLanguages and #IAmTheFlag.  Follow us on social media at @GovernmentZA @SAGovNews for updates on Human Rights Day proceedings.

Phumla Williams
Cell: 083 501 0139

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