Liu Yandong: Make Confucius Institutes a “Rainbow Bridge” Connecting Hearts of People of China and South Africa

[Source] [Time]    2017-04-28 17:33:48 

On Apr. 26th, Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong visited to the Confucius Institute at the Durban University of Technology in Durban.

Upon her arrival, Liu Yandong was warmly welcomed by teachers and students singing and dancing in traditional South African costume. Liu Yandong visited the exhibition on the teaching achievements of the Confucius Institutes and Confucius Classrooms in South Africa and watched a student art show “China and South Africa, Members of One Family”. Students performed impassioned Zulu dance, the dance of Zhuang ethnic group named “Wandering through Mountains and Rivers”, valiant and heroic Chinese martial arts as well as the recitals with music of the excerpts from “The Analects of Confucius” and “The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela” and President Xi Jinping’s significant statements on China-Africa relationship. The fluent Chinese spoken by young students and their brilliant performances won warm applause from the audience.

Liu Yandong expressed that students’ wonderful performances gave her a deep impression on the friendliness and warmness of the people in “Rainbow Nation” and the genuine and profound friendship between China and South Africa. Confucius Institutes build a bridge of friendship and people-to-people communication with language as its vehicle and culture as channel, serving as an important platform for cultural exchanges and mutual learning. The leaders of China and Africa attach great importance to the construction and growth of Confucius Institutes. Currently, a total of 48 Confucius Institutes and 27 Confucius Classrooms have been set up in Africa, and 10 of them are in South Africa, making the country with the biggest number of Confucius Institutes and Confucius Classrooms. These institutes and classes help local people learn Chinese language and culture, and contribute to the mutual understanding and friendship between the two peoples. In 2015, South Africa listed Chinese into its national education system, and there have been 11 primary and secondary schools piloting Chinese classes. It is believed that with the unfolding of the pilot program, more and more South African children will embark on a remarkable journey of learning Chinese language and Chinese culture. It is hopes that China and South Africa can continue their sincere cooperation to make Confucius Institute a “Rainbow Bridge” connecting the hearts of the two peoples, and to make new contributions to China-South Africa and China-Africa people-to-people and cultural exchanges and to the development of global civilization.

(Story by Song Fangcan, China News Services, Durban, Apr. 26th, 2017)