The mastery of the Kreol language, at all levels, is a major prerequisite for its introduction into the National Assembly and this process will take time. There are certain requirements and preconditions which would have to be met and fulfilled before the Kreol language can effectively be used in the proceedings of the National Assembly.
This statement was made by the Prime Minister, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, today, in reply to a parliamentary question (PQ) at the National Assembly, in Port Louis. The PQ pertained to the proposal of using the Kreol language in the National Assembly. It is important to ensure that the Members of the National Assembly, along with all the relevant staff, receive appropriate training in the language, he said.
Speaking about technical requirements, Mr Jugnauth underlined the need to have appropriate hardware and software installed before introducing the language in the National Assembly.
The Prime Minister indicated that the Digital Recording System being used in the National Assembly presently is a customised system which uses an off-the-shelf component in the form of a Voice-to-Text software for the automatic transcription of the proceedings of the House in English and French. A platform will have to be developed to recognise the Kreol language given that the technology is sensitive to accents, he said.
The National Assembly is also benchmarking on other similar projects where native languages have been encapsulated on technological platforms for translation, transcription and other uses, highlighted Mr Jugnauth.
In addition, the Prime Minister recalled that the preparatory works for people to develop a mastery of a harmonised version of the Kreol Morisien is being pursued and facilitated by Government through teaching and training.
As a matter of fact, the Kreol Morisien which was introduced in primary schools in 2012 has been extended to Grades 7 and 8. The teaching of the subject has also been extended to Grade 9 in 2020 and it will be assessed at the level of the National Certificate of Education assessment in 2020-2021 at the end of Grade 9, he remarked.
Moreover, the number of pupils studying Kreol Morisien in primary schools has shown a steady increase from 17 305 in 2017 to 18 903 in 2019. Furthermore, 3 681 pupils of Grade 6 sat for Kreol Morisien at the Primary School Achievement Certificate examination in 2019 compared to 2 830 and 2 480 for the years 2018 and 2017 respectively.
Government, emphasised the Prime Minister, is pursuing its efforts for the promotion of the Kreol Morisien in schools by providing all necessary resources. This effort will have to be sustained over a period of time until the required critical mass is developed, he stated.
According to Mr Jugnauth, some good progress has been made in terms of the elaboration of the orthography, grammar and vocabulary. In this regard the following linguistic aids have already been published: lortograf Kreol Morisien, gramer Kreol Morisien and diksioner Kreol Morisien.
Moreover, an Akademi Kreol Repiblik Moris has been set up in May 2019 under the aegis of the Ministry of Education, Tertiary Education, Science and Technology, to follow up on the development and use of the Kreol language in the Republic of Mauritius. One of the objectives of the Akademi Kreol Repiblik Moris is to develop further the orthography, grammar, lexicon, usage and norms of the Kreol Morisien, he added.