The young nation of South Sudan has chosen English as its official language but after decades of civil war, the widespread learning of English presents a big challenge for a country brought up speaking a form of Arabic.
I knew there might be problems as soon as I arrived at Juba International airport – and was asked to fill in my own visa form, as the immigration officer could not write English.
The colourful banners and billboards hung out to celebrate South Sudan’s independence back in July, and still adorning the streets now, are all in English. As are the names of the new hotels, shops and restaurants.
After decades of Arabisation and Islamisation by the Khartoum government, the predominantly Christian and African south has opted for English as its official language.
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