Pause: Our own languages matter in the digital age… Or do they?

Pause: Our own languages matter in the digital age… Or do they?

__Who are we, really?

Someone asked me the other day why I thought it was necessary to make the Sasai App available in different African languages. “What is the point?” he reasoned. “Most people who use digital platforms like Facebook, WhatsApp, and Twitter, do so in English, French or Portuguese. They are educated. They don’t need languages like Shona, Ndebele and Yoruba. You are just wasting money; they will not bother to even use it.”

I was so deeply saddened by what he said.

For me this was an elitist mindset forged by the colonial era, when we were forced, almost brainwashed, to look down on things our own people do. Even though some African countries have been independent 60+ years, many of our people continue to hold this type of mindset!

I decided to look at all the Apps I could find, particularly the big ones. What surprised me was finding that languages like Swedish, Norwegian etc. are widely translated. Actually almost all the languages of Europe are translated and used in these Apps, and yet many of these languages have fewer speakers than languages like Swahili, Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo and Amharic, to name but a few!

Croatia has less than 5m people, and it is available on all major Apps, and yet national languages of Africa which are spoken by hundreds of millions of people are not there. How can this be? How can it be right?

It has nothing to do with education, but everything to do with lack of inclusion and even respect.

I think having our languages also available on digital platforms is fundamentally important, even if we also communicate in other languages like English. Swedish people mostly speak English but they would be outraged if they could not access Facebook in their own language!

To me:

# Language means #Inclusion:

How can it be okay for hundreds of millions of people not to be able to use an App in languages that they speak every single day?

# Language means #Respect.

I also believe the promotion of our own languages in generating content and undertaking eCommerce and Social Media is important in the digital age of AI and 4IR! We won’t be able to include every dialect of course, but my team will be listening…

__Give me your thoughts on why it matters. (Or, if you think it does not…)

I believe that we must demystify these platforms and allow our people to use local languages, when they want. Our languages will not be respected otherwise. I can’t for instance imagine that the Italians who are fewer than Hausas would be happy if Facebook was not available in their own language!

Anyway, the big day is very very soon now when we will release versions of the Sasai App in 25 African national languages … (I am not supposed to say yet, shhh!) There will be another 25 to follow within a month. We will continue to release them until we reach at least 250. After a few months, we will see which languages perform. And if a language does not have users, we will discontinue it.

I’m not going to tell you the first 25 languages. They were not chosen in terms of importance but were really based on the number of translation groups that registered by our cut-off date. So don’t be upset if yours is not there in the beginning; it will follow.

Question: Do you know any other App that is available in multiple African languages? Is this important to you and your family?

Please comment below.

In my next post I will talk about another feature you will see on Sasai Explore from next week: localization of content!

To be continued. . .

Author:Strive Masiyiwa

Strive Masiyiwa is the founder and Executive Chairman of the Econet Group. He serves on several international boards including Unilever, and the Global Advisory boards of the Council on Foreign Relations and Stanford University. A board member of the Rockefeller Foundation for 15 years, he also serves as Chairman of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). He is a co-founder of the Carbon War Room, Pathways for Prosperity, and the Global Business Coalition on Education. He and his wife, Tsitsi, co-founded the Higherlife Foundation and are signators of the Giving Pledge.

45 Replies to “Pause: Our own languages matter in the digital age… Or do they?”

  1. Afterthought 2.
    If we begin to demand that our own languages be included where they are spoken by at least 5m, it will also create jobs for people in Africa to do the translations.

    As an entrepreneur, if you are not happy about something, try to #EntrepreneurIt and set an example. I now want to encourage Entrepreneurs to begin to address the exclusion of our languages and culture from the digital platforms of the world.

  2. #ShoutOut to committed and caring teachers everywhere!

    A few weeks ago was World Teacher Day and I asked you to share here about a special teacher. There were some amazing ones, thank you. Don’t forget to tell your teachers, too. Kibuuka Ibrahim shared a special story of one teacher who changed his life in P.7.

    Today’s big #ShoutOut is to mathematics teacher Mr Kakooza at Kayanja primary school! (I don’t know if he is still there).

    “If that boy doesn’t Register for Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE), I must resign,” said Mr Kakooza who had sent another classmate to knock on Mr Ibrahim’s door at home and bring him back to school to sit for the exams. He had been sent home by the headmaster in tears as he hadn’t the money to pay all his fees at this government school.

    “I won’t forget this teacher. He is my Hero… He is the reason why I can now be able to communicate with you fellow Africans”.

    What do you see?! I see Mr Kakooza (and I hope millions like him) building Africa’s century, one young student at a time, even when they are facing very hard times.

  3. #Pause:

    How you helped EntrepreneurIt! the Translations!

    It started with a request for translators through this platform.

    @CrowdSource, technique!

    I want to give a #ShoutOut to each of those groups that responded. We will talk again later on this issue.
    We did not just get responses from Africa, but a lot of our friends in Asia also responded. So you will see the languages of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh amongst those we will release.
    Arabic had a huge response, and a team from Israel translated Sasai into Hebrew!

    The team at Sasai then approached a team at their sister company Akello which looks at digital education [they are the parent company of Muzinda Hub]:
    The team at Muzinda Hub reached out to the people who had volunteered to do the translation of their mother tongue. They managed the process, from 4 centers:
    Joburg, Harare, Gaborone, Nairobi.

    Let’s end @Language Exclusion on the Internet.

  4. #Pause:

    Growing up in Zambia, as a Zimbabwean, I was exposed to two languages:
    Bemba, which is spoken in the Copperbelt Province, and also Nyanja [also known as Chichewa in Malawi]. Whenever I filled a form which asked for language skills, I would proudly put:
    -Shona, Bemba, Nyanja, then English [in that order!]

    For me, being educated has nothing to do with mastery of a foreign language like English, French, Portuguese or Spanish. We need to fight that mindset, because it has allowed us to elevate into leadership positions, people with linguistic skills believing they were smart, when they were not!

    One of the things I discovered is that my ‘ear’ can follow almost any African language.

    I once spent several hours just discussing African languages with President Yoweri Museveni.

  5. Lungisa Mangi Sobhuwa writes,

    It’s so sad that some of our people still associate intelligence with European languages.

    That you Sir for raising such an important matter and thank you for uplifting our African languages.

    My reply,
    I studied at a British University, and I remember vividly the arrival of a Chinese student who spent the first year studying English and them joined our engineering class. He could barely follow what was going on, but he was the top student!
    This drove home to me at the time, that intelligence had nothing to do with linguistic skills!

  6. #Reflection:

    #Show respect through language appreciation, when traveling!

    When you travel as an entrepreneur or if you are meeting customers and business partners from another language, always show respect for their language!

    It can help you close important deals!
    Good for business!

  7. #Sasai Update!
    Sasai has now been downloaded in 143 countries out of 194 in less than 3 months.
    Out of 54 African Countries, there are only 6 countries where there are no Sasai users:
    #1. Comoros;
    #2. Equatorial Guinea;
    #3. Eritrea;
    #4. Guinea-Bissau;
    #5. São Tomé and Principe;
    #6. Tunisia.

    If you live in or have friends in any of these countries, please ask them to download.

  8. Ansu Kamara writes,

    Chief I have a suggestion. What if our local languages can be translated digitally.
    For example, If I am communicating with a friend of mine in Zimbabwe on Sasai through Text, Voice Msg and even Voice Call. This three means of communication can be converted through the Sasai App from my local dialect(Mende) to my own friend local dialect(Shona) to dismiss language barrier in Africa. Through this innovation we can able to communicate easily and understand ourselves more better than ever before.

    My reply,
    As an entrepreneur, yours is to make this a reality. Go for it!

  9. #Pause:
    Let’s digitize all African books:

    (1). All school books that are available should be digitized IMMEDIATELY, AND PUT ONLINE.
    Anyone on this platform can help authors of these books to digitize, if the books are very old.

    (2). Translate African books into other African languages. This is an entrepreneurial opportunity!
    Make such books available online.
    (3). Translate business books into local languages, working with their authors and publishers.
    Hey you can even translate some of my own materials and tips into local languages!

    There is so much we can do!

    Warning:
    Whatever you do, don’t violate Copyrights and IP.
    If you want to do something with the creative content of other people approach them properly with your proposal.
    Includes me.

  10. Nya Jane writes,

    Strive Masiyiwa Most Job applications in the US have a section where they ask what other languages you speak. Unfortunately, no African language is in the list provided. I use the ‘others’ section to manually put my native language followed by the national language then English. We as Africans suppress our own strengths, yet the world is waiting for us to open our mouths and speak. One thing I have noted, Americans are amazed at how many languages we can speak, they wonder how we do that, most of them can only speak English.

    My reply,
    The world is waiting for Africans to step forward and say we want to see our own language versions in books, and Social Media platforms. You will be surprised by how receptive they will be.
    If you say to them, “why can’t we have Hausa or Oromo which are spoken by over some 100m?”
    They will ask you, “is that what you really want? Will you use it?”

  11. Barnabas Mamah writes,

    Sir you are on point. Our local languages matter and I want to add Pidgin English which should be seen as African English. Its spoken in Ghana and Nigeria.

    My reply,
    I can confirm that there is a version of Sasai in Pidgin English.

  12. #Reflection:

    Creating @Inclusion is a massive entrepreneurial opportunity for you!

    Remember our mantra:

    “If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, identify a human need and reach out to solve it, in a sustainable way that also protects our environment..”

    This discussion is the human need called @INCLUSION:

    Hundreds of millions of people are excluded from the social and economic benefits of the Internet because they cannot read or write languages like English.
    Education is just one of many tools we can deploy to tackle this problem.
    There are many other smart ideas that we @EntrepreneurIt to address this problem and in the process creating for ourselves great new ventures:

    Here are just a few ideas:

    #Translate books, and also make them available in audio format.
    Many English books today are also available in audio format.
    You can actually approach publishers and offer them your services to translate and make popular books, articles etc available in audio formats.

    #Create podcasts, and read articles and newspapers in your local language.

    #Create platforms for people to access information in audio format, using popular translation platforms.

    #Create awareness about the need for inclusion of languages.

    The entrepreneurial opportunity created by language inclusion is as big as the entrepreneurial opportunity that created mobile money platforms like EcoCash and M-PESA.
    So where is the “M-PESA of language inclusion”?
    Who will come up with a cool innovations that make it easier for people who cannot read English, French etc to enjoy what we all take for granted every day?
    It’s YOU!

    With Sasai I have just shown one small example, but you have to go much further, than even I can dream of. I know you can!

  13. Jackson Mulikita writes,

    Dr Strive Masiyiwa,

    Google has a technology that makes it possible for one to send a message in Swahili and the other receive it in Ndebele.

    Such model can be embedded in Sasai App.

    My reply,
    We are very much aware of this technology, and we are looking at it.

    You raise a very fundamental principle that I use all the time in finding solutions; I encourage my teams to embed other solutions that already exist.
    Let me give you an example:

    Google have a platform which they bought from an Israel company, called WAZE, which many of you know.
    We have been testing an integration of WAZE on Vaya Mobility. It will be available next month. You can Innovate by simply adding existing innovations into your own products!

  14. Justin Ashon writes,

    Strive Masiyiwa Sir, Having our languages represented is of utmost importance for us as a people with a strong identity.

    Here’s some interesting observation I made with an effort to explain the slow rate of our inclusion on social media applications.

    A majority of the Chinese speak and communicate in Chinese, meaning they could read and write in pinyin.
    It is the same for the Italians, Japanese, Arabs, Portuguese and French. Having these languages covered is more of a marketing strategy than that of respect though they have earned it and we have. If these languages aren’t covered from the get go, social media apps risk loosing out on a huge market opportunity both from a user perspective and data driven analysis perspective.

    Now, in Africa, I would use my beloved country Nigeria as an example. Teaching our indigenous languages in schools is now almost a thing of the past. A majority of those already active on social media that can speak these languages can use apps in English and the ones who cannot use(speak, read or write) English language, cannot read Igbo or Hausa or Yoruba.

    So while we digitize our languages, respect starts from us. English is a universal language, however we are leaving in a generation of expression. We can exchange ideas and information only if we can communicate ( read, write, speak). So while we digitize, we must teach and make our languages learnable and transferable. I was able to teach myself American Sign Language, French, and started learning Arabic and Chinese not just because I saw the global perspective from a business angle but because I found resources online. I would be looking into this app Zivo as stated by my Austin Uzim (Thank you for the information).

    Please let us all digitize lessons on our languages. We should have most of our languages on Duolingo. It is very important.

    I am an itsekiri/Urhobo with a Ghanian Origin and I have stayed in the East for five years where I picked up some Igbo, the North where I picked up Hausa, and then I learnt some Yoruba from the North. While all patchy, I would love to learn some of these and improve if I get resources online! That again is an opportunity.

    So can we create a version of Duolingo that teaches our languages. Please techpreneurs and thinkers reach out let us do this.

    And by the way, any Ghanian with a strong understanding of the language? I would love to learn.

    My reply,
    #ShoutOut!
    Well said.
    Now go out and EntrepreneurIt!
    With these amazing ideas.

  15. Joseph Mushoke Sikuka writes,

    it will really be nice to include a dictionary on all those languages.

    My reply,
    Good idea.
    Personally, I’m not going to do this on Sasai, because that is not it’s purpose.
    However this idea is for you to pursue, because the vision has been given to you. Now if later someone else does it ahead of you, please don’t complain, as the idea will not wait for you, it will go to someone who is willing to act on it.
    So @Entrepreneur It!

  16. Samson T Russom writes,

    Chief, I’m an Eritrean and a die-hard follower of your mentorship on this page. I will persuade my friends and relatives to download sasai and benefit from it.
    By the way, I’ve never seen you mention Eritrea being connected with the project of Cape to Cairo fiber connection. Kindly sir, do you have any plans for this small & beautiful nation to be integrated? Thank you

    My reply,
    First of all thank you for ensuring that there are now Sasai users in Eritrea!

    Now concerning your country:

    Before the peace deal between Ethiopia, it was extremely difficult for us to invest in Eritrea. Investor’s nervousness about Eritrea continues to be high, and there is a real need for the government to engage investors to find out their concerns, and then to address them. I cannot put it here.
    I would be willing to invest heavily in Eritrea because I have many friends who tell me how beautiful it is. I even sent some people to have a look, it’s up to the government to demonstrate that investment matters to them.

  17. Chala Olani Abetu writes,

    I think Afan Oromo( the language of the largest Ethnic group ‘>50m population’ in Ethiopia & also the 3rd extensively spoken language in Horn of Africa next to Kiswahili & Arabic among the 25 you select..

    My reply,
    All languages must be equal in value, and we should not approach importance based on size, if we do that we embed intolerance and suppression of minorities. Let’s be careful.
    It were far better for all of us to fight for:
    (1). Languages which are not our own.
    (2). Ensure that our children learn languages from Africa, which are not their own.

  18. Lolo Jecinta Amaka writes,

    I love to speak and add Igbo to my writing. I also include it in the words saved on my #keyboardwords. But what perfect way can we address this issue to get quick response and action?

    I love be on any Igbo team.

    My reply,
    There is always a more excellent way:
    What about another Nigerian language, from your own?
    And even better would you join a team working in Shona, or Kinyarwanda?

    Our diversity does not come from our ability to fight for our own languages, but that of our African neighbor.
    Teaching our children to love other African languages is the key to the future for all of us.

  19. #Reflection:

    Each time we start a new business or product, these days, I encourage my team to come up with an African name for it.
    Do you know what languages we chose for the following:

    #Sasai,
    #Vaya,
    #Ugesi,
    #Akello,
    #Maisha,
    #Muzinda,
    #Ruzivo.

    What language is your own venture?
    Would you consider names from other African languages, from your own?

  20. #Pause:

    If there is something that makes my blood boil:

    #1. Africans who disdain or look down on other Africans;
    #2. Ignoramus’ who thinks his tribe or language is superior, bigger, better, more important!
    #3. Africans that bad mouth other Africans using tribal stereotypes.
    I think the most pathetic people in Africa are tribalists. They are more pathetic than White Supremists, and have same low IQ!

    I might be almost 59 years old, but I’m 20 when I get angry, and I will punch the person in the mouth for sure!

  21. Samson T Russom writes,

    Strive Masiyiwa, thank you very much for the prompt response. I get your point completely, regarding the issues. We ourselves are trying to fight in the conditions,for Eritrea to be open to investors like you. We don’t want to be left behind from our African brothers, in fact we need to be part of this African Transformation (All Africans are Eritreans and all Eriteans are Africans).
    I pray with you that things will change shortly and we’ll have a different story to tell in the future. The peace and the welcoming spirit of the hardworking people is an attractive investment platform (though not enough). I’m currently residing in South Sudan and I wish I could be one of your muzinda hub training beneficiaries with coding.

    Thank you and God bless you Papa Strive.

    My son,
    Thank you for those beautiful words.

    #1. I have directed my Sasai team to ensure at least that we open the #Remittance Corridor to Eritrea as soon as possible.

    #2. As everyone in South Sudan knows the Liquid Fibre cable will reach Juba from Uganda by December. Soon after I shall personally fly to Juba to inaugurate that cable, bringing broadband for the first time to South Sudan.
    We will follow up with a project for Muzinda Hub, South Sudan!
    Much more is possible, but South Sudan must do much more to create a case for investment outside of oil sector.
    If I, your brother, don’t tell you, then who will tell you the truth?

    #3. I want to link Eritrea to its neighbors, and also to build a Cable Landing Station.
    I want to roll out fibre in your cities, and bring broadband.

    I could open up Eritrea to $5bn investment initiatives, more than your country could cope with even; creating high paying jobs, bringing back people from who left for other countries, and much more!

  22. Munya J Samupunga writes,

    Tatenda, eNkosi, Vie Danke, Asante Sana, Gracious, Merci, Xiexie Strive Masiyiwa. Sasai is going to be an amazing app after this especially for those who can’t read in English.

    Vie Danke!
    Yes the African language called Afrikaans, is amongst the languages of South Africa and Namibia, that is on Sasai App, which will be released next week.

  23. Emmanuel Gabriel writes,

    Strive Masiyiwa I am glad you are advocating for this. Please make sometime to visit Obtranslate We are building machine translation (MT/AI) for 2000+ African languages.

    We are currently building a baseline for low level languages to test performance on our web translator and messaging App. What we are building is massive. OVH, Amazon and Google are currently supporting us with massive infrastructure to model our languages.

    It would be a great honour to speak with you on this project. God bless you..

    My reply,
    I have asked the Sasai team to find you and see how you can work together!
    My kind of guy!

  24. #Reflection:

    My best friend ever!

    When I arrived back in Zimbabwe in 1984, I joined the public telephone company, and was immediately assigned to work on a highly prestigious project for the country, which was to build its first satellite earth station.
    I shared a desk with another engineer who had trained in East Germany. He was absolutely brilliant. He welcomed me and invited me into his circle of friends. His name was Robert Siziba.

    Working with the Japanese meant long hours but we determined to match them at every stage, and they soon learnt to respect us as Engineers.

    One day I was summoned to headquarters by one of the most senior guys at the company. He was so senior I had never actually met him. I was led to a chair where a group of men interrogated me, in a friendly but firm way about my friend.
    “Why are you asking me these questions?” I asked.
    “There is a war on, and your friend is a spy. We want you to keep an eye on him,” one of them stated.

    “He is not a spy. A man does not become a spy simply because he is from another tribe. That is totally unreasonable,” I stated innocently, but firmly.
    “Maybe, you are also a spy!” one of threatened, trying to intimidate me.

    “These men are very powerful. They are from the CIO,” one of my bosses said.
    “Strive is very idealist. He does not understand the situation,” he then appealed on my behalf.

    “Sir, if you don’t trust me, or Robert to deliver on this project, just remove us. Me, I m ready to leave the country on tomorrow’s flight. You can build this thing without me. I’m not going to spy on anyone, that is the dumbest thing I ever heard.”
    We stared each other down and I just refused to cooperate on anything.

    After they left, my big boss, told me I was arrogant, and was dicing with my very life.
    I knew and he knew, that the two of us had become critical to the project, and our removal would create a problem with the Japanese who were funding the project, as part of international cooperation.

    I never told Robert, and we remained close friends until he died of illness a few years later.

    It was probably the opening salvo in a battle that would almost cost me my life a few years later.

    Never allow yourself to succumb to the irrationality of #Tribalism.

    Your best friends must come from people of other tribes, nations, races and even religions.

    I have friends from other tribes, nationalities, races, and religions to whom I would gladly entrust my very children.

    How about you?

  25. Oloyo Blessing writes,

    Strive Masiyiwa My venture is pronounced in my Mother tongue #Yoruba as #Mòtalè

    Mòtalè is a Beautiful name given to me by my parent which means A Child that will last till the end of time or A Child that will last long.

    There is huge inspiration behind that name.

    Mòtalè mere pronouncing it,I know I am not giving up anytime soon whatever might come my way.

    My reply,
    @Mòtalè!
    I love your name. Wise parents,
    You are indeed an “Anna” in this generation, and you will live to see the Rapture!

  26. #Reflection:

    My “end game”:

    In making the Sasai App to be available in different African languages, this was my end-game:

    #1. Inclusion:
    More than 500m people in Africa cannot speak an international language like English or French.
    We have to become much more conscious to their needs than ever before, because everything is migrating to the digital environment.
    #2. Create a Market place for books, and video content:
    There are a lot of African books that are written, and even more could be written. There is also a lot of local tv, Vimeo’s, YouTube, and other materials that are just fantastic, which you cannot easily access because they are “lost” to the rest of us.

    To achieve the second part, I cannot do it alone. I have created the platform, which I hope other entrepreneurs will seize and run with. Sasai Explore will soon be populated with platforms for local African content. What you are currently seeing is not my “end game” yet.
    In a few weeks time I will be watching my favorite African comedian on Sasai Watch!

  27. Precious Onome WhiteDove writes,

    Strive Masiyiwa not so sure what they mean and their origin but I know it has an African flavour embedded in them.

    For my company, I chose to use Zobo because it’s a Nigerian name for Hibiscus/Sorel/Roselle which are all foreign names.

    Even when people drink our products and insist it taste like a unique wine so I should remove the Zobo and use Wine or Juice instead I kindly refuse, because what we represent is Africanism even if we have our eyes on the global scene in the future.

    It’s a longtime personal decision to always name our ventures with an African name, because we promote African brands.

    Thank you dad.

    #ZoboKing

    My reply,
    You and Bonolo should get to know each other. Maybe I can introduce you!

  28. #Here is a great opportunity for someone out there!

    #Create platforms for African Books in audio format:

    Almost all major books published these days are always available in Audio Book.
    But where do I go if I want to get audio versions of African books?

    Who is going to translate international books into Audio in African languages?

    #Whoever does this will achieve two things:

    (1). Make it easier for those who cannot read to acquire knowledge!
    (2). They will make a tonne of money [remember it was books, that launched the richest man in the world today!]

    Come on guys!
    This is simple!

    If someone has an Audio Book platform for African books, I will put it on “Sasai Books”~waiting for you!

  29. Omoruyi Folarin Osas writes,

    Papa I noticed the trend and it caught my attention.

    1. Sasai means “Chatting” in Shona Language.

    2. Vaya is a phrase spoken in South African townships meaning “to go.”

    3. Ugesi means Electricity in Zulu (Why the second energy Business to DPA known as Ugesi Energy)

    4. Akello means “to bring forth” in Uganda Language. (This name fits an Edutech and Skill development thats why it is Akello Edutech.)

    5. Maisha in Swahili means Life (Why is its called Maisha Medik)

    6. Muzinda means Empire in Shona Language

    7. Ruzivo in Shona means Knowledge (Why its called Ruzivo Digital Learning)

    The lesson for me is that it’s not just enough to name companies for the sake of naming them e.g. Folarin and sons internation limited. There should be a deep meaning and Brand story attached to the names. God bless you Papa

    My reply,
    Good effort!
    Vaya is Ndebele.

  30. Ukatu Emmanuel writes,

    Try not to laugh after watching this very funny video. I bet you can’t control yourself, You will laugh like a baby
    click on the link below now to watch this very funny video…https://youtu.be/RTb8UqtF7hk

    My reply,
    Yes I saw it, and yes I thought it was so funny!

    However:
    What is the entrepreneurial opportunity from your point of view?

    In Developed countries comedy is big business, but in Africa we do not create real opportunities for our comedians to make money and become African, and perhaps even household names.

    On Sasai Explore, we are creating Sasai Watch, which will be a platform for you to watch content like this from all over Africa. You will have to pay for it, and we will give the owner 90%.

    We can turn African artists into global stars by making sure we don’t buy pirated materials.

  31. Mansur Sani writes,

    Good day Mr Masiyiwa.

    Let me start by saying that “People are more at home using their mother tongue”.

    Hausa as a Language is spoken by 150 million people according to recent research conducted by Spectator Index.You find Hausa in Ghana,Cameroon,Chad,Niger and Predominantly in Northern Nigeria.

    I think is one of the reasons that the Facebook found important as to have a Hausa version of its platform.

    Now coming to Sasai app,as I previously suggested in this platform,it will do a lot of good if the app is rendered in Hausa language.I know how an average Hausa hold so dearly to anything presented in Hausa and how important it is to them.

    When a Hausa Professor of English would meet a fellow Hausa Professor of English they will definitely converse in Hausa no matter how long their conversation would last.That is the extent to which Hausa people value their language.

    And it will be easier to convince people to download the app and make use of it when it is made available in Hausa.

    As I mentioned earlier I will always be available to volunteer for such exercise.

    My reply,
    The 10 largest Nigerian languages will be available on Sasai by the end of November.
    Hausa is in the first release in a few days time.

  32. Kal Emmanuel Bangs writes,

    Wali yoo biyanbeh ,na meh na sangala ba .
    This is a greeting in limba.
    Masala mamoe.
    Is the answer,that is to say am fine.
    A very beautiful language to create an app for or included thanks Dr. The limba are in the north of Sierra Leone,but are presently all over the world.

    My reply,
    If you don’t create this App in Limba, then who will, my brother?
    Entrepreneurs don’t make suggestions, they DO!
    So do it, and do not stop until it is done!

  33. #Pause:
    The opportunity that will make you the richest person in Africa, begins here!

    Consider the story of Jeff Bezos (the world’s richest man currently worth $110bn).
    Who remembers how he started?
    By selling books!
    Amazon was originally set up to enable people to find books, and have them delivered quickly; that is all!

    #I want someone from this platform create “Africa’s Amazon”~@Fast Follow Jeff Bezos!

    I want access to African books, entertain material, available in one place. I want YOU to do it for me, and I don’t mind if you become as rich as Jeff!

    There are 500m people who cannot read, but they can listen to audio books, using their mobile phones.
    Help them to listen to our greatest authors in their local languages!

    Where is my boy Christian Val lloanaeke?
    This is for you son!

    Come on guys!

    This is easy!

  34. Thembisile Mlambo Mutlanyana writes,

    Wow!!! Oh! Boy, only Boys can do that… #TryMe…

    My reply,
    I thought of you as I wrote that comment!
    I have great expectations of you as an entrepreneur and this area really suits you.

  35. Akinwonmi Taibat Fagbenro writes,

    PLS,THE WRITER OF THIS MUST MAKE IT WORK ON BEHALF OF MY SELF AS A YORUBA INDIGENE MAKE IT HAPPENED PLS FOR OUR UNBORN GENERATION TO VALUE OUR OWN LOCAL LANGUAGES IN ALL AFRICAN LANGUAGES THANKS .

    My reply,
    I set up this platform to help develop entrepreneurs. I want you to become an entrepreneur.
    I have a problem with your appeal:
    It does not tell me what you [yourself] are going to do. The moment you make appeals for others to do something, you yourself have abdicated an opportunity to be an entrepreneur in favor of just being a consumer. There is nothing wrong with being a consumer, because we all consume something. However, if you want to become a successful entrepreneur in your own right, avoid this type of messaging, because it is just an emotional appeal, that offers no solutions.
    Join us, and become an entrepreneur!

  36. Jackson Mulikita writes,

    Dr Strive Masiyiwa, Thank you so much for been an inspiration. you are really an icon of computational thinking. because of the rich information i always find on this forum, i was inspired to register an NGO(Limited company by guarantee) called *Never Alone Foundation*. It was recently registered and one of our objectives is to support and promote technology that helps people to carry their culture to the future, and Sasai is such a one. Dr Strive Masiyiwa, Our organization is looking forward to working with you on language translation in Zambia.

    My reply,
    This is a good idea, and I hope you do well with it.

    There are two Zambian languages on Sasai App.

  37. #Pause:

    In case you did not know:

    There is a full time team that reads every post, and have strict instructions to ban and delete materials that:
    (a). Promote hatred of any kind, including racial, tribal, religious, or gender based.
    (b). Promote money making schemes.
    (c). Promote xenophobia of any form.
    (d). Denigrate other people.

    (e). Promote groups like Illuminati, and Witch Doctors [they are the same to me].

    (f). Seek to high jack the platform to promote political agendas and grievances. Even if you think I agree with you, I will not allow you to use this platform.

    Otherwise you are welcome to discuss entrepreneurship, and other things we discuss here.

  38. David Radafison writes,

    Your langages is very good , in developed countries comedy is business, but in Madagascar we don’t create real opportunities for our comedians to make money and become Madagascar , and perhaps even household names..

    My reply,
    So why don’t you?
    Who is supposed to do it?

    “If not you, then who; if not now, then when?”

  39. #ShoutOut to Olivia and her team!

    Olivia Onyia I think our language is very important. I currently host a show in my Igbo language on Africa Magic Igbo. I’m always impressed and quite humbled by the genuine engagement we get from people who absolutely enjoy the show. Language must be preserved for future generations as it is part of our identity. I even took it a step further to launch a catering franchise that makes our native cuisines available at events and for home/office delivery across my country Nigeria with offices in Abuja, Lagos and Enugu. The reception has also been awesome and we are growing, expanding and feeding people with our delicious Abacha. Our food and our language must never die! Thank you Mr Strive. You inspire me and my team

    My reply,
    I hope you will be able to bring your show onto Sasai Explore/Watch, which we will be launching in a few weeks.

  40. #I need your entrepreneurial Response!

    Once we issue versions of the Sasai App in your language, it becomes necessary for entrepreneurs to create content for people to access in that language.
    If you look at all the services on Sasai Explore, we need services in each language.
    We need people to translate Apps, as well as develop new Apps, that make it relevant for people who access the platform in a local language, otherwise they will be confined to just the Chat, and Pay functions.
    This challenge is for you, and not for me. If we don’t get Apps which can populate our icons, then we will take it as meaning people who use that language are not interested in it. The language would then be withdrawn. I don’t think that will happen. No pressure here!

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