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China planning to have Mandarin as examinable subject in Kenyan schools

Saturday November 19 2016

China's Ambassador to Kenya Liu Xianfa (right) presents a certificate to Glory Konana (centre), a student at the University of Nairobi (UoN), at the institution on November 14, 2016. With them is UoN Deputy Vice-Chancellor Henry Mutoro. Ms Konana is one of 20 students who were awarded scholarships by the Chinese government to study in China. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NATION MEDIA GROUP

China's Ambassador to Kenya Liu Xianfa (right) presents a certificate to Glory Konana (centre), a student at the University of Nairobi (UoN), at the institution on November 14, 2016. With them is UoN Deputy Vice-Chancellor Henry Mutoro. Ms Konana is one of 20 students who were awarded scholarships by the Chinese government to study in China. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

JAMES KARIUKI
By JAMES KARIUKI
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China, well known for funding expensive projects in Kenya, has now launched a process to introduce its national language Mandarin as an examinable subject in Kenyan schools.

Speaking at the University of Nairobi’s Taifa Hall during the disbursement of master’s degree scholarships to 20 Kenyan students at Chinese universities, Ambassador Liu Xianfa said a high ranking team of 15 scholars were working on curriculum development.

“The Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development is promoting introduction of Chinese as a subject in Kenyan primary and secondary schools. A 15-man delegation of accomplished Chinese scholars also visited Kenya to boost face-to-face talks,” he added.

The envoy said they had disbursed Sh1.2 billion for construction of Confucius Institute at the University of Nairobi. He added that the facility would offer training in Mandarin and serve as a home for other Kenya-China scholars’ partnerships.