Handing over of isixhosa Chess books at Hazendal Primary School | Western Cape Government



Handing over of isixhosa Chess books at Hazendal Primary School

18 August 2015


Speech by Minister of the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Anroux Marais

Mr Watu Kobese, author of the first isiXhosa chess book

Principals of local Schools

Chief Director of Sports and Recreation, Advocate Lyndon Bouah

Other Department officials

Chess stars and learners from the four schools,

It gives me great pleasure to stand before you today on this auspicious occasion. This event will go down in the history of the Western Cape and you are all a part of this celebration.

Today, we hand over isiXhosa chess booklets to schools who offer chess as part of the after-school Mass Participation, Opportunity and Access, Development and Growth Programme, which we all know as the MOD programme. The four MOD centres who will receive the first of its kind isiXhosa chess books are Sopokama, Masipumulela, Nomlinganiselo and Hazendal Primary Schools.

This event would not have been made possible without the innovation of Mr Watu Kobese, who identified a need for an isiXhosa chess book. Together with the Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Mr Kobese developed the isiXhosa terminology for chess pieces, its moves and the game as a whole.

Launched on 7 July 2015, the first isiXhosa chess book will make it easier for learners to master the game of chess. I thank the author Mr Watu Kobese for assisting the department in promoting the use of the three official languages of the Western Cape, namely: Afrikaans, isiXhosa and English. You have undoubtedly helped us ensure that the Western Cape is a caring home for all by promoting multilingualism.

Children will now be able to learn about the sport in their home language of isiXhosa and in that way we encourage excellence and inclusivity in sports. The handing over of these isiXhosa chess books is the physical implementation of the department’s mission to move towards excellence, through creating the conditions for access and mass participation, talent identification and skills development.

I thank my department and the officials present here today for ensuring that the Western Cape is an open opportunity society for all, regardless of language proficiency.

I also thank the principals and educators for improving education outcomes and opportunities for youth development in taking seriously their management role of the MOD centres at their respective schools. Learner participation at MOD centres assists with positive learner attendance at school, learner discipline, teamwork, as well as keeping learners interested in attending school.

Lastly and certainly not least, I thank the learners: the chess stars and others who came to witness this significant hand over. You have made an exceptional choice to participate in the MOD centres at your schools. In making the decision to focus on your own development and wellbeing, you now have the opportunity to advance your skills and talents to another level. I hope that despite the bad things happening in our communities, that with perseverance, passion and commitment, I will soon see you at regional, national or international chess tournaments, representing your families, your communities your province and your country.

I thank you.


Media Enquiries: 

Stacy McLean
Spokesperson for Anroux Marais, Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport
Tel: 021 483 4426
Cell: 083 504 1171
Email: Stacy.McLean@westerncape.gov.za