Alain Ah Vee – Political Broadcast on Kreol Language 05.11.2019
In LALIT we believe that all languages have the right to live freely. All languages are equal.
But, successive Governments since Independence have promoted English and French to the detriment of Kreol.
Whether Labour, PMSD, the MMM or MSM, they all repress the Kreol language, they all bar Kreol from being a medium in schools.
They ban Kreol from Parliament.
This, even though, throughout the electoral campaign, they will speak to you almost entirely in Kreol.
The minute elected, they bow down to the old colonial laws that despise our language.
This means despising the 94% of the people who in the last Census said they usually speak Kreol at home.
Over the past five years, the MSM-ML Government has used all manner of technical excuses for not allowing Kreol to be spoken in Parliament. The Mentor Minister announced he didn’t agree at all, going as far as to say this would be “ridiculous”.
He seems to have forgotten that in 1977, when he was Opposition Leader, it was he, himself, who proposed a motion for the introduction of Kreol into Parliament. At the time, he agreed. He thought it was a serious matter.
What is ridiculous is when he and other Minister and MPS go on speaking English in Parliament live on TV, in a language is that not ours. [The legal advisers of the MBC did not accept this bit about Aneerood Jugnauth saying that it was “ridiculous” without having the exact citation! We are publishing the original words, because that is what he said.]
LALIT wants the laws changed so Kreol can be used in Parliament on an equal footing with English.
In schools, our children must be free to learn their Maths, Science, Geography and other content subjects, through our mother tongue.
It is a constant LALIT struggle to promote and fight for the recognition of Kreol.
Since 1976 we have both used written Kreol and promoted it. We have published newspapers, books, magazines and so on in Kreol. Our program for the election is in Kreol.
Our members are active in associations that use Kreol, and that teach adults literacy in the mother tongue.
We do this because we love the Kreol language. But also, and specially, because we want the working class to become stronger, and power to the people! . We want more people to experience political struggle and to participate in the political life of the country. To be able to be part of all the struggles against inequality, against the destruction of agricultural land, against the pollution that capitalism is causing the environment. That is LALIT’s politics.
That is the aim of our program.
By contrast, the MSM, Labour, PMSD, MMM seek to keep the existing system in place.
They don’t want the working class to be stronger. They don’t want power to the people. This is why they keep the peoples’ language out of Parliament.
Language plays the key role in our very capacity to reason, as well as in our thinking and creativity.
Our capacity to think abstract thoughts develops easier, faster and to a higher level, when through the mother tongue. All research proves that children learn to think better through the mother tongue. That’s why UNESCO promotes mother tongue based education. That’s why the Ombudsperson for Children recommends this in her 2018 Report.
The Kreol medium means that text books and exam papers will be in Kreol. An English version can stay alongside.
Having Kreol as medium will take the stress off the PSAC exams. To make children learn through a language that is not naturally theirs is to do them violence.
When Kreol is suppressed in schools, it harms children. It does cognitive harm, as well evidently as emotional and cultural harm. Each year 30% of children, after 6-7 years of school, can neither read nor write. Not in English, French or Kreol. The other who pass on a knife-edge, learn by heart.
Even those with four As, get them by rote learning.
All parents want their children to acquire high level English, as well as other languages. Today there are important advantages to this.
But for this, the child needs a solid basis, a scaffolding, in the mother tongue. Then, one builds on this.
LALIT favours a mother-tongue-based multi-lingual education.
The education policies that Labour, PMSD, MMM, MSM apply when in power does not help children develop, nor does it raise the level of education in the country. Even the MSM-ML Government’s Reform Plan shows no sign of improving the level of education, though it has decreased competition to some extent. In fact, there seems to be a regression in PSAC results last year. Over 50 years since Independence, it is now time to decolonize all State institutions. We must remove all the barriers that prevent the Kreol language from progressing and developing freely.
Whether in Parliament, or in schools.
If you agree with this, vote LALIT’s candidates, in all constituencies. Voting for LALIT means voting for the advancement of Kreol.