[lg policy] Battle to retain Afrikaans at varsities continues

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Fri Aug 12 11:08:06 EDT 2016

Battle to retain Afrikaan at varsities continues
Crime & Courts / 11 Aug '16, 4:45pm

Pretoria - The fight to retain Afrikaans as a language of learning at both
Unisa and the University of Pretoria is still on.

This is according to lobby group AfriForum who on Tuesday launched a second
urgent application to provisionally interdict Unisa from implementing its
new English language policy.
AfriForum Chief Executive Kallie Kriel. File picture: Dumisani Sibeko. Credit:

But the high court in Pretoria did not entertain this second attempt and
referred the matter to Deputy Judge President Aubrey Ledwaba to direct on
the way forward.

AfriForum lawyer Werner Human on Thursday said they are waiting
instructions from Judge Ledwaba as to when the matter will be heard. The
court is expected to then also deal with AfriForum’s application against
UP’s new language policy.

Human is hopeful to return to court soon to continue this fight.

AfriForum urgently wants the new language policies to be put on hold, as it
said that this will prejudice new students who are presently enrolling for
the 2017 academic year.

The lobby group is set on later asking the court to review and set aside
the new language policies.

AfriForum last month lost its urgent application to temporarily halt Unisa
from implementing its language policy, as the court found the matter not to
be urgent. The case was simply struck from the roll before the merits of
the application were argued.

The judge last month said AfriForum knew about Unisa’s language policy
since March this year, but only chose to come to court a few days before
the new students were due to enrol for 2017.

AfriForum is adamant that the implementation of all steps to phase out
Afrikaans as a language of learning and tuition should be halted, until the
court at a later stage reviewed the language policy, with a view of setting
it aside.

While UP said it would phase out Afrikaans at its university, Unisa made it
clear that English is now the only language on offer.

zelda.venter at inl.co.za


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