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Parliament finally seek translators for local languages

By Daniel Chigundu

Parliament of Zimbabwe is finally seeking the services of translators for local languages after years of empty promises.

The absence of translators was reportedly making it difficult for some legislators to effectively participate in Parliament business especially in the House during debates.

Though the constitution recognises about 17 local languages, Parliament was mainly being conducted in English, Shona and Ndebele while the like of Honourable Dingumuzi Phuti, Prince Dubeko Sibanda and Murisi Zwizwai would throw in their home languages here and there to make a point.

Last week Honourable Zwizwai told the Speaker of National Assembly in the House that he was willing to surrender his Parliamentary salary to help recruit translators for Parliament.

However, Parliament of Zimbabwe this week advertised various posts including those of translators on its website for such languages as Sign Language, Tonga, Nambya, Kalanga, Venda, Shangani, Ndau, Chibarwe and Xhosa.

The translators will be under Parliament’s Public Relations Department and they will be reporting to the director of public relations.

According to Parliament, the job description for the translators will include:

# Interpret accurately and simultaneously vernacular languages spoken during plenary sittings of the House and Parliamentary Portfolio Committees business;

# Produce educational material on Parliament for schools, civic society and the general public in vernacular languages;

# Produce Parliament articles and other publications;

# Cover Parliament events like workshops, seminars and conferences through photography and writing;

# Translate Parliament fact sheets and other documents into local languages;

# Assist in conducting public hearings and educational outreach programmes;

# Develop Parliamentary terminology in liaison with various stakeholders; and

# Perform any other duties as may be assigned from to time by the Director Public Relations;

In terms of qualifications, the ideal candidates are expected to have the below-stated minimum qualifications and personnel specifications:

An Honours Degree in Arts / English and Communication Studies; A postgraduate qualification in Education is an added advantage; Sound Public Relations / Marketing knowledge is a distinct advantage; Good communication skills, both verbal and written; Ability to interpret and translate at least any two of the following vernacular languages Chewa, Chibarwe, Kalanga, Khoisan, Nambya, Ndau, Shangani, Sign Language, Sotho, Tonga, Venda, Tswana and Xhosa

At least 2 years of relevant working experience; 5 “O” Levels, including English Language and Maths; and Knowledge of Quality Management System (QMS) ISO 9001:2015 will be an added advantage.


To Apply
Applications, together with fully detailed curriculum vitae, copies of certified educational and professional certificates, a motivation letter of not more than 200 words (for posts 1 and 2) and three contactable referees, clearly showing which job is being applied for, should be hand-delivered and/or sent to:

The Clerk of Parliament,

Parliament Building,

Corner Third Street & Nelson Mandela Avenue,

 P.O. Box CY 298,

Causeway, Harare

Alternatively, submissions can be e-mailed to hrvacancies@parlzim.gov.zw

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Daniel Chigundu

Daniel Chigundu is a male journalist in Zimbabwe and has been practising since September 2009. He used to the editor for The Business Connect (newspaper) in Harare, has his own news website Tourism Focus which is biased towards the tourism sector. Daniel is also working with Magamba Network on their project called Open Parliament where they do live coverage of Parliamentary activities on Twitter and Facebook. He is currently the secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Parliamentary Journalists Forum, is a member of Zimbabwe Small Broadcasters Association and a board member of Digital Communication Network. He holds a Diploma in Communication and Journalism from the Christian College of Southern Africa (CCOSA), a certificate in Youth leadership training from the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES), a certificate in Citizen Journalism from Magamba Network and is currently a first-year student at Zimbabwe Open University studying for a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Ethics and Organisational Leadership.

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