Creating a Space for Guinea's National Languages on the Internet


2015 and 2016 have been crucial in terms of elections in Africa. Over the course of these two years, there have been 14 elections to date.

Internet users have developed a range of initiatives to empower the people to exercise the full range of their civic rights. In Guinea, for example, where 65% of the population is illiterate, the Guinean Bloggers Association (l’Association des blogueurs de Guinée, or ABLOGUI) launched a campaign to raise awareness and address the use of ethnic differences as a political agenda, to avoid clashes within the population. (Full disclosure: The campaign has funding from the Open Society Initiative for West Africa; Global Voices receives support from Open Society Foundations).

ABLOGUI is doing so in Pulaar and Malinke (Maninka), two languages widely spoken in Guinea. While French is the official language of government in Guinea, two-thirds of the country's people don't speak or understand it, so making information available in these languages is important.

Global Voices asked Tafsir Baldé, head of the commission for the promotion of national languages within the Guinean Bloggers Association, to give his thoughts on this experience. Read the full story from Global Voices here: