Uganda on Saturday held the first annual Chinese proficiency competition for secondary schools aimed at boosting the learning of the language in lower levels of education institutions.
The one-day competition that was held under the theme ‘Learning Chinese, Double Your World’ attracted nine participants from two secondary schools.
Speaking at the event held in the central Ugandan district of Wakiso, the minister of state for primary education Rosemary Sseninde said the ministry had approved the inclusion of the learning of Chinese language in the school curriculum.
In a speech read for her by Samuel Kalula, Under Secretary ministry of education said it is critical to learn the Chinese language in a bid to tap opportunities from China, the world’s second largest economy.
“We should appreciate that China is a big economy that many of us in the African continent can not run away from, we therefore need to learn the Chinese culture, language,” the minister said.
Fang Yi, a representative from the Chinese embassy here said language is a bridge which enhances the friendship between China and Uganda.
Hong Yonghong, head of the Confucius Institute Makerere University, which organized the competition said since 2014, the institute has been teaching the Chinese language.
He said in May this year 10 people among which included principals and headteachers of secondary schools in Uganda went to China to learn Chinese.
On return, Hong said the teachers have expressed interest in teaching the language in their schools once they are facilitated.
The competition included giving a speech in Chinese language, talent show among others.
The two top winners will travel to China where they will compete with other students from across the globe. Enditem