JOHOR BARU, Sept 16 — In promoting innovation and new technologies everyone should use the National Language or Bahasa Melayu, to prevent the language from teetering on the brink of extinction, said Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Sahruddin Jamal.

In making the call, he said the use of the National Language to acquire knowledge and progress could actually elevate the language to a higher level and earn credibility for Malaysia.

He said the effort was important because in today’s borderless world, languages which tend to dominate were those more widely used for technology inventions and innovations which were much needed by the people.

“As such only we alone are able to elevate our language as a medium of acquiring knowledge and to achieve progress, by actively using it in business, writing, documenting and discussing new concepts,” he said in his speech at the launch of the state-level 2019 National Language Decade Movement roadshow here, today.

His speech text was read out by Deputy State Secretary (Management) Datuk Dr Badrul Hisham Kassim.

As of April this year, Dr Sahruddin said the National Language was the sixth most common language used on the internet, after English, Mandarin, Spanish, Arabic and Portuguese language as it was used by about 169 million people.

However, the position which is based on the number of speakers alone does not guarantee that the National Language is the language of communication and knowledge, if the people themselves do not put the language to practice, he said.

Therefore, he said it was timely for Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP) to organise the National Language Decade Movement in promoting Bahasa Melayu as the language of communication in various fields as well as in the education, public and private sectors.

Also present at the launch were DBP Language and Literature Department director Dr Hazami Jahari and DBP Southern Region director Norhafizah Mohamed Husin. — Bernama