NEWS & ANALYSIS

AfriForum ready to tackle UNISA's language policy

Organisation says High Court ruling does not stop implementation but they will take on university management itself over policy

AfriForum ready to tackle Unisa’s language policy, even if court ruling doesn’t stop implementation 

21 September 2016

While today’s ruling of the Pretoria High Court does not stop the implementation of the 2017 language policy by the University of South Africa (Unisa), AfriForum is ready to tackle the university management itself in court over the policy.

Unisa’s new language policy determines that as of 2017, English will be the only language of instruction at this institution and that Afrikaans, currently the medium of instruction for between 20 000 and 30 000 students at this institution, will henceforth no longer be used. AfriForum already laid a charge against the university management’s acceptance of the new policy.

According to Alana Bailey, Deputy CEO of AfriForum, the honourable course of action would have been for management to have halted the implementation, but Unisa however did not want to give any undertaking of this nature.

In light of the ruling AfriForum encourages students to bring their need for Afrikaans study under the attention of university authorities. “The courts can protect the rights, but the future of the language lies especially in the hands of Afrikaans-speaking people – it is their duty to claim and use it. They must also personally make their disgruntlement with the new policy and implementation thereof clear.”

“AfriForum views the protection of students’ constitutional right to Afrikaans instruction as the biggest importance and is willing to defend it to the highest level with legal action,” says Bailey.

Issued by Alana Bailey, Deputy CEO, AfriForum, 21 September 2016