Dr. Lawrence Muchemi, a Computer Science lecturer in the University of Nairobi, Kenya has said that the initiative taken by Academy of African Language (ACALAN), the African Union specialized agency that seeks to promote African languages will propel unity and development for the African countries.
The Nairobi, Kenyan born specialist in Human language technology said this while speaking on ACALAN TV after an interactive 2 Day workshop organized by ACALAN in Bamako, Mali.
The 2 Day interactive workshop with the theme “Comprehensive and Interactive Platform and Bridging the 6’ Gap Between the Computer and the African” was aimed at aimed at drawing a road map for developing a comprehensive and interactive platform for the ACALAN organs, working structures and partners in view of raising its visibility; identify and assess works on African Languages and their presence in the cyberspace, and equipping African languages and adding values to their presence in the cyberspace, and applying Human Language Technology to them among others.
Dr. Muchemi said “This particular initiative that we are having in this particular workshop is aimed at creating a platform that will have focal point for all African languages whereby scholars, policy makers, academicians and even people who are interested in commercial working offices that would be the first point of call”.
“What I can say about this initiative that has been taken by ACALAN to promote the future of African languages is that, these are languages that are going to propel the unity and development of Africa because, when people use one language, they are always feeling together. There is that comradeship” he said.
He noted that his passion is to work with the African languages, and that is, specified Kiswahili.
“Kiswahili and many other languages are some of the languages ACALAN has taken as Cross-border language for commercial purposes” he said.
Dr. Muchemi however said “we are happy that ACALAN has organized this so that we can take this agenda forward”.
Participants at the workshop include former Minister of Education, Republic of Mali and the Executive funding of ACALAN, Mr. Adama Samassekou; Representative of UNESCO, Mrs. Dorothy Gordon; Academician, Professor Marcel Diki-Kidiri; Director General CICIBA, Professor Antoine Manda Tchebwa; ACALAN Executive Secretary, Dr. Lang Fafa Dampha; Director General AMALAN, Professor Boniface Keita; Representative of Mali Government and Chief of Staff to the Minister of Communication, Usman Bombay; Expert, South Africa, Professor Langa Khumalo; SPPO ACALAN, Dr. Ojo B. Johnson; Expert Mali, Mr. Houssein Ahmed Assowe; Mr. Issiaka Ballo,Expert Mali; Dr. Odejobi Odetunji, Lecturer, OAU Ile-Ife, Osun State, Nigeria; Professor Moses Ekpenyong, University of Uyo, Nigeria; Lawrence Muchemi; Mandela Doncoure; Yoette Kowassy; Angela Herman Kilusungu; CEOAfrica Director and ACALAN TV Expert, Mr. Cletus. S Ilobanafor, Martin Benjamin among others.