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Why TikTok has recognized four Kenyans ahead of International Day of Sign Languages

By Winnie Mabel September 22nd, 2022 2 min read

TikTok plans to join the globe in marking the International Day of Sign Languages on Friday September 23, 2022. In doing this, TikTok has recognized four Kenyans who have been driving inclusivity in the platform’s community in a bid to raise awareness around the importance of human rights among the deaf.

“Kenyan TikTok creators in particular are doing their part, playing an instrumental role in raising public awareness through their content on the platform. There are many communities on TikTok, one of the prominent ones being the instructive content community that offers simple and fun explanations, tutorials, and interpretations of codes so that others can learn and execute signing with ease,” TikTok said in a statement.

“As an all-inclusive platform, we acknowledge the importance of embracing different communities on TikTok. We remain committed to promoting the different ways in which people can teach each other about sign language and how to use this medium of communication in all spheres of life,” said Boniswa Sidwaba, the TikTok Content Operations Manager for Africa.

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The statement from TikTok went on to reveal the four Kenyans it has recognized:

1. @Kingdeafrapper (Kenyan musician) – He uses sign language as an art to showcase and grow his skills, including free-styling rap. He also uses some of his content to teach the language and links his followers to other trainers.

2. @Mercygathaga – She makes music accessible by helping the deaf community access and enjoy different genres of music just as others do. She also analyses the songs and gives the meaning of lyrics by interpreting messages into sign language codes. She also loops everyone in by using the songs as background music for her content.

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3. Youla Nzale – She has been hailed as one of the best content creators in Kenya and was celebrated as a top Kenya TV interpreter. She makes it easy for deaf people to understand national issues as she signs during prime time news bulletins.

4. Zubeida Kananu – She uses TikTok to showcase her strides in learning to sign as an encouragement for others to join in on the virtual lessons on Kslonlineclasses where basic tutorials on alphabets, numbers and finger spelling is taught.

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