A ceremony to mark the 2019 International Literacy Day was organized yesterday morning in Nay Pyi Taw with the objective of creating more opportunities for people amidst global change, and to support the teaching of ethnic languages without discrimination on the basis of race, faith, and colour to ensure equal benefit to people.
The campaign theme for this year is ‘Literacy and Multilingualism’ to integrate literacy movement and the role of ethnic languages for equal access to learning opportunities at present time.
Union Minister for Education Dr Myo Thein Gyi presided over the event which was opened with a song performed by the pupils from No 2 Basic Education High School of Pyinmana.
The Union Minister, as a patron of the organizing committee, made a keynote speech, with saying that Myanmar scored two international awards, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi Award in 1971 and Noma Literacy Prize in 1983, presented by UNESCO for the country’s remarkable milestones in literacy movements through successive eras.
The Union Minister also referred to the 2014 Myanmar Population and Housing Census and its supplementary report that showed 3.5 million Myanmar citizens aged 15 and above are illiterate, and the figure poses a huge challenge to realizing the nation’s development goals. The literacy movement plays a key role for increasing the development indicator, he added.
The Ministry of Education is working together with the state/region governments, the associations of ethnic literature and culture and the ethnic affairs ministries to conduct ethnic language courses at 12,488 schools at basic education level for 766,731 pupils by 20,199 ethnic language teachers and 11,718 teaching assistants.
In his conclusion remark, the Union Minister urged to do more in generating healthy and intelligent human resources in accordance with the theme of this year’s International Literacy Day.
Then, the documentary video of literacy movement was showed and Rector of Yangon University of Foreign Languages and the Secretary General of Myanmar National Commission for UNESCO Dr Kyi Shwin read out the message sent by the Director-General of UNESCO for the 2019 International Literacy Day, and its excerpted concept notes were read in ethnic languages.
Union Ministers Dr Myo Thein Gyi and Dr Win Myat Aye, MPs from Pyithu Hluttaw and Pyidaungsu Hluttaw, Director-General of Department of Alternative Education Dr Zaw Win presented certificates and cash awards to 322 students who passed the 2019 matriculation exam after completing the alternative education programmes.
The ceremony was concluded with the song of pupils from No. 5 Basic Education High School in Pyinmana.
The Union Ministers then looked around the exhibition booths to mark the International Literacy Day.—MNA (Translated by Aung Khin)