Constant practice makes perfect — Wong
by Mahathir Haroun, email@example.com. Posted on June 20, 2012, Wednesday
KUCHING: Constantly speaking and writing in Bahasa Melayu (Malay language) is the only way for one to master the language, especially if one is a non-Malay, says Local Government and Community Development Minister Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh.
It is equally important that the language be learned at a young age, he added.
“There is no short-cut to master the command of Bahasa Melayu as it needs constant practice. The most ideal period to master the language is when one is still at a young age.
“As for me, I am not fluent in Bahasa Melayu because I learned the language quite late in my age. But if the non-Malays are taught the language at a young age, I am sure they will be able to speak as fluent as the Bumiputera community,” said Wong, who is also Second Finance Minister, when officiating at the state-level Chinese schools forum competition here yesterday.
On the language, he said it had been in existence for centuries and had reached an advanced level ever since it was used as Malaysia’s official national language.
“We must be proud of our national language and we should strive to master it. In fact, Bahasa Melayu can become a medium that promotes integration, strengthening ties and solidarity among all communities,” he continued.
Meanwhile, Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP) Department of Construction of Language and Literature director Sallehuddin Abg Shokeran, in his speech, stated the forum could be used as a communication platform to share thoughts and information.
“Therefore, this medium is believed to be appropriate in encouraging the younger generations to communicate clearly and effectively in the national language,” he said.
In the competition, Chung Hua Middle School (CHMS) No.1 from the city emerged champion followed by CHMS No.4. Third place went to SMK Pei Min of Miri.
Chai Chin Wuen of CHMS No.1 was announced the best chairperson while best forum speaker was Mildred Yiek Feng Yee of SM Catholic High, Sibu.