Francophonie celebrated in Dar Es Salaam [fr]
Francophonie 2019 : French language at heart
On 20th March 2019, the French President Emanuel Macron defined Francophonie as : « un continent humain qui admet comme constitution une grammaire partagée, comme articles de loi une syntaxe, comme code civil un vocabulaire ». He added : « elle tisse le récit entre des individus que séparent des océans, des déserts, des traditions et qui dans le creuset de la langue française se retrouvent et se comprennent. » The gathering of Belgium, Burundi, Canada, Comoros, DRC, Egypt, France, Morocco, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Switzerland and Vietnam highlited the extent and the diversity of Francophonie.
French is an international language : only language spoken on five continents, it is the 5th most spoken language in the world with 300 millions speakers (that should reach 700 millions in 2050). It is the official language in 32 States and in many international organizations, including the African Union. It represents 8.4% of global GDP. French, aside English and Kiswahili, is largely spoken in Tanzania with 1.5 millions speakers, and the only foreign language (beside English) in school’s curricula.
59% of French speakers live nowadays in Africa, that could rise to 80% in 2050. The French President Emmanuel Macron rightly emphasised : « le français s’est au fond émancipé de la France, il est devenu cette langue monde, cette langue archipel. » The relationship between Africa and French language has old roots, as attests the grounding of the IOF that was born in Niamey (Niger) where in 1970, 21 members gathered in order to promote the cultural expression of French language. As illustrated in the choice of Louise Mushikiwabo at the Head of the IOF, Francophonie is closely related to Africa.
Today, the IOF counts 88 member states, including 7 associated members and 27 non-French speaking observer members that are keen to get involved. French language is not the only raison d’être of the IOF : the Organization also promotes Peace, Democracy and Human Rights within its member States. Many cooperation programs provide cultural exchange in education, scientific researc and economic development.
Francophonie Week in Dar
On Monday, the opening ceremony was held at the Belgian Embassy, where Belgian fries and beers were served, as part of the cultural heritage of Belgium.
The screening of the documentary « The Cleaners » was on Tuesday provided by the Swiss embassy at the National Museum. The film, awarded at the Geneva International Film Festival and Forum of Human Rights 2018, is a journey into hidden shadow industry in Manilla, right into the heart of digital censorship where the internet has to be « cleaned » of controversial content.
Then, a dance performance was organized by the High Commission of Canada, created and directed by the Arushan contemporary dance association Ibuka Dance Foundation.
The drama-comedy « Intouchables » was screened at the Alliance Française on Thursday where the audience could watch the touching and funny friendship between Philippe, a wealthy quadriplegic, and his live-in caregiver Driss, who just got out of jail.
The French School Arthur Rimbaud then gathered the « Brigades d’Interventions Poétiques » to help Middle and High School students writing poems . The students then showed off their skills at the Alliance Française, with the help of the DAFTA Teachers and seven Tanzanian schools.
Friday evening was the last screening evening where the film « Hochelaga, terre des âmes » was proposed by the High Commission of Canada. A film celebrating the cultural and ethnic diversity of the Canadian people through times.
Saturday morning, the Belgian Embassy organized a football tournament where the French team finished in fifth place, beaten by the heat, and the DRC team in the 2nd place, beaten by the Moroccans.
Last but not least, the French Embassy invited the rumba-congolese singer Christian Bella and Malaïka Band and the French-Ivorian singer Kajeem at the UDSM, where around 500 people could celebrated one last time Francophonie by dancing.
We thank all our sponsors that enabled us to organize this Francophonie Week : Protea Hotel, Swiss Air and Ultimate for the logistics support.