Parliament translation services gets recognition

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Parliament has been honoured for consistently providing simultaneous interpreting for all South African official languages, including Sign Language.

The honour was bestowed by the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB) in celebration of International Translation Day, observed today.

International Translation Day is meant as an opportunity to pay tribute to the work of language professionals, which plays an important role in bringing nations together, facilitating dialogue, understanding and cooperation, and contributing to the development and strengthening of world peace and security.

The acting CEO of PanSALB, Angelina Netshiheni, congratulated Parliament for successfully establishing a language services unit with close to 150 language practitioners, who offer simultaneous interpretation and translation services, including transcription services.

Netshiheni said Parliament plays a major role in promoting multilingualism as a national resource, and this has also motivated the bestowing of the award.

“PanSALB recognises the efforts of the Parliamentary Language Services unit that contributes to the creation of conditions for the development and use of the 11 official languages, including South African Sign Language. PanSALB is looking forward to a time when Khoi and San languages will also be part of the languages used by the unit.”

Deputy Secretary to Parliament Modibedi Phindela said the award was truly an honour.

“As we know, language is more than just communication. Language is a key aspect of our social fabric and a critical component of social cohesion and nation building. It influences the way we think and affects the way we experience emotions.”

In addition to the award, PanSALB handed over foundation phase bilingual dictionaries as a token of appreciation to the Parliamentary Language Services Unit.

These indigenous language dictionaries are produced by the National Lexicography Units, which are constitutionally and legislatively mandated to develop the dictionaries and other materials. -