Digital equipment, to ensure the provision of high-quality teaching of Mandarin across 15 primary schools in Mauritius, and, ultimately help in further promoting the Chinese culture, were presented, yesterday, by the Embassy of the People's Republic of China to the Ministry of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research, during a ceremony at MITD House in Phoenix.
The Chinese Ambassador to Mauritius, Mr Sun Gongyi, presented symbolically a projector to the Minister of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research, Hon Mrs Leela Devi Dookun-Luchoomun. Equipment donated comprised 28 projectors, 28 printers and eight laptops. The projectors and printers will be distributed to primary schools while the laptops will be used by officers of the Ministry of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research.
In her address, Minister Dookun-Luchoomun, stated that Mauritius's friendly ties with China is deep-rooted in history and the first Chinese immigrants came to Mauritius two centuries ago and brought with them their extraordinary workforce and, in particular, the rich values of the Chinese culture. The Sino-Mauritian community has significantly contributed to the socioeconomic development of our young Republic and for all this we are indebted to China, she emphasised.
According to the Minister, Sino-Mauritian diplomatic ties largely reflect the fervent wish of both States to go beyond the economic and geopolitical spheres. Now, over and above Government-to-Government rapport, both countries are resolutely moving towards endorsing Chinese people-to-Mauritian people connections, she pointed out.
Speaking about Mandarin, Mrs Dookun-Luchoomun highlighted that the language fits perfectly in the multilingual society of Mauritius. It is presently being taught in several primary schools and assistance is being sought to extend Mandarin to secondary schools in the future given its popularity among the students population.
The Minister seized the opportunity to show her appreciation to the Chinese Embassy for arrangements made to send 30 Chinese voluntary educators, for the year 2019, to teach Mandarin across primary schools in Mauritius.
The Minister also indicated that education represents the very basis of progress and is the development engine of a country, and thus, Government is determined to better equip young Mauritians to face the multiple challenges in a globalised world and understand the trials posed by the digital revolution.
For his part, Ambassador Sun Gongyi, stated that Chinese-Mauritian exchanges in different fields are ongoing since the establishment of diplomatic ties between both countries 46 years back. Education and cultural exchanges in particular have been very fruitful, and each year, the Chinese Government offers numerous education scholarships to Mauritian students who have opted to pursue their studies in China, he highlighted. Many students once they return to Mauritius have become high officials in different sectors and have brought important contributions to the socioeconomic development of the country, he remarked.
In addition, the Ambassador observed that studying Mandarin, favoured by the rapid development of bilateral ties, is proving highly popular in Mauritius. This is largely due to the joint efforts by the Ministry of Education and the Chinese Embassy, and the increasing number of schools offering Mandarin courses have enabled Mauritian students to take up Chinese courses in a systematic manner, he stated.
The Chinese Ambassador expressed hope that the equipment donated will allow the Chinese voluntary educators, to be based in Mauritius, to carry out their work efficiently and promote the Chinese culture amongst Mauritian children who will become the future Ambassadors of the Sino-Mauritian friendship.