Swahili Day at the AKAM

01 July 2008

Swahili Day at The Aga Khan Academy, Mombasa (AKAM) is an annual event held in the school, aimed at promoting awareness of both the Swahili culture and language.

Click to enlarge imageSwahili Day at The Aga Khan Academy, Mombasa (AKAM) is an annual event held in the school, aimed at promoting awareness of both the Swahili culture and language. This appreciation of culture is synonymous with the pluralistic ideals of the school, in an effort to create a multi-cultural atmosphere that is conducive for diversity and the appreciation.

The third annual event was held this year on June 6, 2008 and it was characterized by a number of events including the recitation of poems in Swahili, singing of songs and dramatizations.

Among the groups that were invited to perform during the event included: The Aga Khan High School Mombasa, Loreto Convent and WEMA Centre boys.

Indeed so significant is the event that the entire school including the student body, teaching faculty and support staff were expected to shed off their usual attire and dress up in traditional Swahili wear.

The event was clearly marked with a lot of pomp and color in the school's Multi-purpose hall:
• a comedy session by the known Abdalla Moi,
• a rap session in Swahili,
• a fashion show by student and teachers of AKAM.

Of course the day could not be complete without a myriad of Swahili dishes which included: starter salads of 'kachumbari', 'pilipili', the main dish of 'biryani', the dessert included 'mathobosha', 'makupa ya Lamu', 'kaimati' and 'podini' while the beverages included Coastal drinks such as 'maji ya ukwaju', 'maji ya sherbati', 'madafu' and 'kahawa thungu/ thamu'.

During a speech by the guest speaker, Hassan Makombo, the auditorium was reminded of the importance of Swahili as a national language and its potential critical role of fostering national cohesion if it is given its rightful prominence. Although Kiswahili is recognized as a national language in Kenya, English remains the official language. Sheikh Ahmed Nabhani from the Swahili Cultural Centre, who was also among the invited guests, left the crowd speechless when he translated the word 'video-camera' into Swahili 'nyakaso pataninga'. The Member of Parliament of Malindi, Hon. Gideon Mung'aro, attended the Swahili Day in his capacity as a parent and also as an enthusiast of the language and culture.