"The motto is: !ke e: /xarra //ke, written in the Khoisan language of the /Xam people, literally meaning: diverse people unite. It addresses each individual effort to harness the unity between thought and action. On a collective scale, it calls for the nation to unite in a common sense of belonging and national pride - Unity in Diversity."
It is appropriate that
the motto “Unity in Diversity” is given in an extinct language,
/XAM, as this places focus on the languages of South Africa.
Nowhere is the diversity of South Africa more evident than in the fact
that we have 11 official languages. The
5 most used are highlighted.
In addition to these languages, there are many others recorded, of which 3 are extinct. Further reading at http://www.sil.org/ethnologue/countries/Sout.html
While diversity in languages is recognised and the Constitution protects a person’s right to be taught in his mother tongue, it is not yet practicable to do so in all cases. People of different languages are therefore encouraged to familiarise themselves with the other languages. An annual Language Day has been celebrated since 1997, with events such as multilingual crossword puzzles and getting people to greet each other in a different language.
(Please be patient while the sound downloads 168kb)