[lg policy] Malaysia: Adenan firm on Sarawak’s English policy, non-Muslim use of ‘Allah’

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Thu Dec 24 16:31:52 UTC 2015


Adenan firm on Sarawak’s English policy, non-Muslim use of ‘Allah’

[image: On November 18, Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem
announced the adoption of English as one of the official languages in the
state government administration. ― File pic]

On November 18, Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem announced the
adoption of English as one of the official languages in the state
government administration. ― File picKUALA LUMPUR, Dec 23 — Sarawak Chief
Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem has insisted on standing by the state’s
policy on adopting English as its second official language as well as the
use of the Arabic word “Allah” by non-Muslims when referring to their God.

According to *The Star*, Adenan said that Bahasa Malaysia will stay the
main language in Sarawak but added that he did not see why this should stop
the administration from improving English proficiency.

“Whether they agree with me in Semenanjung (peninsula) or not, I don’t
care,” the English daily quoted him saying yesterday during a ceremony to
hand over native land titles to residents in the township of Serian.

“I made English the second language in Sarawak. Of course, Bahasa Malaysia
is still the main language. We agree and have no issue with that.”

“But what is wrong with us also being proficient in English? It’s the
language of science, learning, literature, technology, business, research,
communication and international relations,” he added.

At the state civil service day gathering on November 18, Adenan announced
the adoption of English as one of the official languages in the state
government administration.

The decision was followed by criticism from Malay leaders in peninsular
Malaysia, who said it would worsen the urban-rural divide and alienate
those in the state’s interior.

On the state policy to allow non-Muslims to use the word “Allah”, Adenan
noted yesterday that there were more non-Muslim Bumiputera in Sarawak than
Muslims, and that he would not interfere with how they choose to practise
their religion.

“You can use ‘Allah’ any time you want. No problem. Just use it with
respect,” the daily quoted him saying.

“I will not tell you how to practise your religion. I am a Muslim and I try
to be a good one.”

“But I will not tell my fellow Christian friends how to worship. It is
their business,” he added.
- See more at:
http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/adenan-firm-on-sarawaks-english-policy-non-muslim-use-of-allah#sthash.tqiA7xDA.dpuf


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