Discover the Indigenous language at the heart of Paraguay's upcoming presidential election

Over centuries of colonisation and battles over the rights of native Guaraní people in Paraguay, their language not only survived but became a sign of identity. And as such, it is also a vital part of the current election campaign.

"Yaiko poraveta" ("We will be better"), assures pro-government candidate Santiago Peña.

"Oú jina" ("Change is coming"), replies opponent Efraín Alegre.

The slogans of the election campaign in Paraguay are spelled out in Guaraní, which is one of the two official languages in the country since 1992.

The language is really the only thing that totally belongs to us, that does not come from anywhere else.

With a population of 7.5 million, Paraguay is home to just about 117,000 Indigenous peoples. But the Guaraní language is spoken by almost 90 per cent of the population and is taught in all schools.

People in Paraguay are descendants of colonisers and native Guaraní indigenous people.

"That mixture became more refined, but it turned us Paraguayans into people deeply attached to their identity, " says historian Jorge Rubiani. "And in that identity the Guaraní language played a very important role."

For writer, translator and teacher María Gloria Pereira, dedicated to book publishing, Guaraní is a language still very present, very alive.

"The language is the only thing that totally belongs to us, that does not come from the other side, that is ours," she emphasizes.

Paraguayans are set to go to the polls on Sunday 30 April. Sunday's elections will elect a president for the next five years. And although many rallies have been held in Guaraní, there is no Indigenous representation in Congress and their situation, such as their land rights and poverty, is virtually absent from the debate.

Watch the video above to learn more about this important heritage.