KUCHING, Feb 15 — Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem today reiterated that to ignore the importance of English was just impractical.
He said most academic books were written in English because it was an international language that was commonly used in the area of commerce, trade, technology, science and literature, among others, throughout the world.
He said Sarawak would stand firm on its decision to adopt English as the second official language in the state as it was the 'language of the world' and Sarawak simply could not be left behind.
Speaking at the launch of the Books for Asia programme here, Adenan said thousands of unemployed graduates in the country could not string a sentence together in English, and could not be employed because they were not proficient in the language.
Under the programme, the Asia Foundation would provide thousands of brand new books to committed teachers and individuals in Sarawak, with the first batch of 19,000 books set to arrive here on March 23.
Earlier, Asia Foundation country representative Herizal Hazri, in his speech, said BFA expanded opportunities for individuals, communities, and nations by putting brand new books and digital content in English and local languages into the hands of students, educators and local and national leaders in 18 countries throughout Asia.
"We empower future and current Asian leaders with information because we know an educated population is better equipped to fight poverty, injustice, and instability," he said. — Bernama