The clarion call for the reversal of the MBMMBI back to PPSMI gained a momentous mandate when the government recently indicated that they are listening to the call for the schools to be given a choice in choosing the medium of instruction. The basic premise of their argument is that by teaching Maths and Science in English, the standard of English in our students would improve and as a corollary to their improvement in English they will fare better in the job market and gain a lot of technical knowledge with little problems as 90% of the scientific and technical knowledge corpus worldwide is in English. What happens even if Maths and science is taught in English but the standard of our children’s English still do not improve?. Shall next teach History, Geography, and Bahasa Melayu in English as well?
I purposely put bahasa Melayu there as I was very much agree with Azmi Anshar in the NST today who wrote that BM is a mutant language. It has mutated so much into English and Arabic that one can hardly read a sentence in a Malay newspaper without encountering an Anglicised or Arabised BM or as Azmi puts it ” brazenly filch English words to beautify their impaired command of the BM”. Ironically the so called champions of the BM are the one that mutating the BM into English with impunity. We used to have the term “maklumat” and without any qualms they anglicised it to ” informasi”. Likewise “lokasi” for “tempat”, “silabus” for “sukatan pelajaran’, “kompleks” for “rencam”, etc… I can cite hundreds of example where a perfectly well understood and much utilised Malay word was mutated to its English equivalent. I tend to further agree with Azmi Anshar that soon there is very little need for us to learn English as Bahasa Melayu itself has been tranformed into mutated English. This really reminds me of the dualism talked about by Prof Sidek Baba that I wrote in my earlier post. The champions of the BM in one way is vocal and hell bent in defending BM but on the other hand they are the one that brazenly filching English words into BM. we are slowly but surely is moving towards the way of our neighbour Indonesi where the use of foreign words in Bahasa Indonesia is considered trendy.