Former refugee elected new Chair of Cymdeithas yr Iaith
A former refugee, who was forced to flee Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) after a military coup, has been elected the new Chair of Cymdeithas yr Iaith (The Welsh Language Society).
Joseff Gnagbo has been elected as the new national Chair at the organisation’s annual general meeting in Caernarfon today (7 October).
Mr Gnagbo has been active within the organisation for several years as its International Officer and also within the Cardiff branch.
Since settling in Wales, he has learned Welsh and now provides Welsh lessons for asylum seekers and teaches Welsh in schools.
He has also spoken publicly about the importance of Wales as a Nation of Sanctuary, and the need to provide Welsh lessons for refugees.
Addressing the meeting, he said that he felt part of the family of the Welsh language as well as the family of Cymdeithas yr Iaith, and that he was looking forward to leading as part of an effective and experienced team.
Mr Gnagbo said: “The work of Cymdeithas yr Iaith, from the campaign for our heartland communities to the campaign for the devolution of broadcasting powers to the Senedd, is an invaluable contribution to the future of the Welsh language.
“If the language is important to you, I would urge you to join Cymdeithas yr Iaith as the best way to ensure a strong future for the Welsh language.
“As someone who teaches Welsh to people in the Cardiff and Newport areas, I feel strongly that everyone from all walks of life should have access to the language. Cymdeithas yr Iaith offers an important solution in that respect in its campaign for Welsh-medium education for all.
“Following the disappointing white paper published recently, it is essential that the Government now strengthens the proposed Welsh Language Education Act and adds a target of Welsh-medium education for all, in order to ensure that in the future, all young people leave school confident in their Welsh language skills.”
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.