NWU to host virtual Africa Day event

Issued by North West University
Johannesburg, May 28, 2020

Africa Day is commemorated annually to acknowledge and celebrate the African Union's successes in its fight against colonialism and apartheid. Furthermore, this event recognises the progress made by the African continent, and also reflects on challenges that Africa continues to face.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this will be a virtual event and will take place on 29 May 2020 from 10am to 11:30am.

The theme for this year is: "SilencingTheGuns: Creating Conducive Conditions for Africa's Development and Intensifying the Fight against the COVID-19 Pandemic".

During the event, two specific topics will be addressed. They are: "Unifying Africa through developing and effectively using her linguistic heritage" and "African traditional medicine and COVID-19: Insights, experiences, challenges and prospects". Among other things, the event seeks to address the intuitions, interventions, experiences, innovations, collaborations, partnerships, holistic research and scenarios of African traditional medicine in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The speakers will be Dr Aunkh Chabalala, director for indigenous knowledge-based technology innovation at the Department for Science and Innovation (DSI), and Dr Thabo Ditsele, a senior lecturer in Sociolinguistics at Tshwane University of Technology.

Dr Aunkh Chabalala is a medical scientist, an applied epidemiologist and an African medicine practitioner with a passion for ancient but scientific African and Afro-Asian healing arts.

NWU alumnus Dr Thabo Ditsele's research interests are contact languages, language and identity, language attitudes, language policy and planning, and multilingualism. His other focus is on sociolinguistics, which is the descriptive study of the effect of any and all aspects of society, including cultural norms, expectations and context of the way language is used and society's effect on language.

Dr Ditsele will focus on linguistic heritage, which is a minority language (either immigrant or indigenous) learnt by its speakers at home as children, but never fully developed because of insufficient input from the social environment.

The NWU's Indigenous Knowledge Systems Centre (IKSC) promotes the teaching and learning of and research on African traditional medicine. The centre co-operates with various strategic partners such as the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, the DSI and the National Research Foundation in its efforts to promote and protect African traditional medicine.

Visit the following link to RSVP for the event https://nwuevent.wufoo.com/forms/africa-day-commemoration-webinar/.

Contact person: Warren Makgowe Contact details: [email protected]/ 072 444 3881