December 31, 2003

Chissano announces school reform with more emphasis laid on mother languages

In his end-of-year message broadcast to the nation, President Joaquim Chissano not only stressed that "the struggle to eliminate absolute poverty will remain our top priority. We must increase production and productivity, and promote development initiatives, particularly in the countryside", he furthermore noted that 2004 sees the introduction of a new and more relevant curriculum in primary education. In particular, the new curriculum means that six year olds will start their education in their mother tongues, instead of in the foreign language, Portuguese. Chissano hoped that the shake-up in the curriculum would make a major contribution "to our great challenge which is to promote, in the medium term, education for all Mozambicans".

2004 would also see a start made to building a new bridge over the Zambezi at Caia. Chissano described this as "the bridge of national unity". It is a key part of the country's main north-south highway, and will greatly facilitate overland communication. "Given its great economic and social value, all Mozambicans have always longed for this project to be built", said the President. (Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique, Maputo)


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