Kenya to publish in Sheng

Published: Tuesday 31 October 2006

Language Kenya

Publishers in Kenya could soon start producing books written in Sheng, a slang drawn from Kiswahili, English and other Kenyan languages. The Kenya Publishers Association Council has acknowledged the slang, saying "it can no longer be ignored". Robert Obudho of the University of Nairobi, said: "Sheng is one of the fastest growing slangs."

He continued: "We are witnessing the use of Sheng in both Kiswahili and English compositions written by our children. Parents have got no option but to learn and practise Sheng. This will help them communicate effectively with the younger generation." However, the council said the use of standard English and Kiswahili should be emphasised to stop students and job-seekers from using the slang in formal oral communication and writing. "The youth should be informed that Sheng is for informal set-ups only. When it comes to formal situations, they should use standard Kiswahili or English," said Kenya Literature Bureau managing director Matthew Adams Karauri.

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