Sign Language is now one of the official languages

President Cyril Ramaphosa has signed the Constitution Eighteenth Amendment Bill (South African Sign Language) into law.

This took place on Wednesday, July 19 at the Union Buildings in Tshwane. South African Sign Language is now South Africa’s 12th official language.

South Africa is the fourth country in Africa to recognise Sign Language as an official language. The president said the Constitution enjoins on the state to take practical and positive measures to elevate the status and advance the use of the indigenous languages of the South African people.

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“It further notes that that all official languages must enjoy parity of esteem and must be treated equitably. We are also giving effect to the provision of the Bill of Rights that prohibits unfair discrimination on grounds such as disability, culture, race and gender.”

He further said the South African Sign Language has served as an essential communication tool for our citizens living with disabilities, and this step will further empower the community.



VIDEO: President Cyril Ramaphosa signs into law the South African Sign Language



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