South Africa’s parliament has begun the process of soliciting public input into a proposed law that seeks to amend the constitution so that it will recognise sign language as one of the official languages of the country.The National Assembly’s Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services on Monday requested interested individuals and organisations to provide written submissions on the Constitution Eighteenth Amendment Bill, B1 – 2023.
“The bill seeks to amend the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa 1996 so as to recognise South African Sign Language as one of the official languages of the Republic and to provide for matters incidental thereto,” parliament said.
Submissions should be received by February 25, it said.
If approved, the bill would make sign language South Africa’s 12th official language. Others are Afrikaans, English, Ndebele, Northern Sotho, Southern Sotho, Swati, Tsonga, Tswana, Xhosa, Venda and Zulu.