[lg policy] SAICA’s decision to drop Afrikaans ill-informed and discriminatory – AfriForum

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Fri Oct 26 11:07:14 EDT 2018

 SAICA’s decision to drop Afrikaans ill-informed and discriminatory –
Marelie Greeff |
24 October 2018
Institute says from now on examinations will only take place in English

*SAICA’s new language policy is ill-informed and discriminatory*

*24 October 2018*

Civil rights organization AfriForum is currently receiving numerous
complaints about the new language policy of the South African Institute of
Chartered Accountants (SAICA), which has just been brought to the attention
of the Institute’s members by newsletter. In the newsletter, it is stated
that the South African Constitution supports multilingualism and that it
will therefore be “unfair and prejudicial” for SAICA to use only one
additional language, namely Afrikaans, for examination purposes. All
examinations will henceforth take place in English only.

According to Alana Bailey, Deputy CEO of AfriForum, it is ridiculous to
argue that the removal of language rights and the introduction of
monolingualism actually promote multilingualism. “The Constitution clearly
states that the language offer in the country needs to be expanded in order
for all official languages to attain equal status in time. Nowhere does it
advocate the use of a single language only, and a colonial language at
that, causing indigenous official languages to gradually weaken and then
die an equal death,” she added.

According to Bailey, institutions like SAICA are ignorant of language
rights and try to appear politically correct by phasing out Afrikaans. In
the process, they evade any obligation to help the other nine official
languages to develop. They deprive the Afrikaans community of learning,
employment and service-delivery opportunities and ensure that there is no
chance that more indigenous languages will develop to the current status of

“AfriForum continually uses the services of Afrikaans-speaking accountants.
It is beneficial for us to have access to information in our own language
and we would like all other South Africans to enjoy the same opportunities.
If SAICA indeed is serious about the Constitution, multilingualism, human
rights and service delivery, it will do everything possible to expand their
examination offer to include more South African languages.

Universities are making huge strides in developing South African languages
and to encourage their use in all disciplines. Institutions such as SAICA
should effectively support such efforts and protect the existing language
offering as an asset for SAICA’s members and the public who make use of the
members’ services.”

AfriForum will approach SAICA with suggestions of ways in which
multilingualism can truly be promoted. Members of SAICA are also encouraged
to bring their support for Afrikaans examinations to the attention of the

*Issued by Marelie Greeff, Media Liaison Officer, AfriForum, 24 October
2018 *


 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com

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