Somalia President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud has urged Somalis to cultivate the habit of using their mother tongue to communicate on regular basis in order to revive the endangered language in the country.
Mr Mohamoud gave his remarks while attending a ceremony in Mogadishu on Thursday marking the 43rd anniversary since the Somali language was launched.
He said that the mother tongue symbolizes one’s identity and it needs to be protected at all the costs. The President also added that language remained the bedrock of development through which cultures and civilisations are expressed globally.
“Writing the Somali language is one of the major victories and all of us should be proud of. We should also be proud of our culture and heritage.’’
In 1972, the Somali language gained official status when it was declared the national language of Somalia or administration, mass media and as a medium of instruction. During that period, a process of standardization was also undertaken, as was the development of a Latin-language alphabet with which to write the Somali language.
In January1973, the first Somali language daily newspaper, Xiddigta Oktoobar, was launched to replace the English and Italian newspapers Dawn and Stella d’Ottobre.