KOTA KINABALU: ‘Manggatal’ is the correct spelling for the district now spelled as ‘Menggatal’, says Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun.
“I believe it is just an issue of spelling. I have always known the place as ‘Manggatal’ since I was a kid but it was changed to ‘Menggatal’ by language purists on the belief, albeit mistakenly, that they were correcting a misspelling,” he told The Borneo Post when asked to comment on the name given to the district.
He said that ‘Manggatal’ was the proper name so it should have been left as it was. He also said that he agreed that the misspelling should be corrected.
But he also opined that the name ‘Menggatal’ has no negative connotation if you look at it humorously!
“On a positive note, ‘Menggatal’ became well known all over the country because of its playful connotation,” he said.
Community Development and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Jainab Ahmad Ayid welcomed the spelling change from ‘Menggatal’ to ‘Manggatal’ for the district.
“I realise that the connotation is not so good and I hope the relevant authority will act on it, particularly since this has been requested by the folks residing there,” she said.
Kepayan assemblyman Dr Edwin Bosi has also expressed his support to the name change to ‘Manggatal’.