São Paulo mayor wants Guarani to become city’s second language
The mayor of São Paulo, Ricardo Nunes, on Thursday sent a notice to the local city council by which Guarani would be declared the second official language of the largest city in South America.
The project envisages the use and learning of Guaraní in schools and the media, in particular in local indigenous communities.
It also provides for the production of public documents and institutional advertising campaigns in the two languages, Portuguese and Guaraní.
Although the initiative was officially presented in July, it became widely known on Thursday after it was published by the Brazilian magazine. Véja.
It is believed that more than 250 languages are spoken throughout Brazil, of which 180 belong to the indigenous peoples.
The project also provides for a translator to be available when needed, to “avoid discriminatory actions” and for a demographic census of the indigenous population every five years.
According to the latest census by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), the Guarani population of the state of São Paulo was 4,138 people in 2010, or about 6% of the total Guarani population in all of Brazil.
In the city of São Paulo, one of the main ethnic villages is Tekoa Pyau, in Jaraguá, in the northwest, with around 600 natives.
Guarani is an indigenous language present in South America, especially in Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia and especially Paraguay, where it is already the second official language of the country.