Council proposes for Bahasa Melayu promotion via social media platforms

National 1 minute, 37 seconds


CONCERNS on using mixed Malay and English languages interchangeably or communicating in slang via social media came under scrutiny yesterday by a Legislative Council (LegCo) member, saying it will hinder upholding and strengthening the Malay language.

Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Maharaja Kerna Dato Paduka Seri Hj Yaakub Pehin Orang Kaya Maharaja Diraja Dato Paduka Hj Zainal questioned the ministry of culture, youth and sports (MCYS) on how its Language and Literature bureau (DBP) would tackle this challenge. In response, the MCYS minister acknowledged the reality of the issue being faced by the ministry, particularly the DBP.

Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Hj Awang Halbi Hj Mohd Yusof said efforts are in place to tackle this issue, through various projects such as having book festivals and involving regional non-government organisations in strengthening the Malay language. However, the minister said it is challenging to eliminate the habit of people using abbreviations when communicating especially through social media outlets, as the platform is meant for faster connectivity. YB Pehin Dato Hj Awang Halbi said nevertheless, he will further look into how the DBP can strategically and systematically address this issue. LegCo member Yang Berhormat Hj A Ahmad Hj Hussin also raised the concern in upholding the Malay language, especially when youths do not even turn up to events organised in support of the cause.

The MCYS minister said with the annual Language Month held, the DBP will be emphasising on the language’s use more extensively throughout the month.

However, YB Pehin Dato Hj Awang Halbi said it efforts to encourage the practice of the official language is not entirely the DBP’s burden to shoulder, but is the equal responsibility shared throughout all government ministries and departments.

Activities organised by the public and private sectors, non-government agencies and others held during the Language Month should also be continued throughout the year, the minister said.

The Brunei Times