Language portrays the people and the nation's personality. Through language, the spirit of nationhood can be instilled to kindle one's self identity in order to fight and defend for the country. Moreover, the strong feeling of ownership can encourage the people to keep on loving the language, which is the nation's heritage that should be preserved. This was stated by Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Lailaraja Retired Major General Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Md Yussof, the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports during the launching of Language Month 2017. Yang Berhormat Pehin's speech text was read by Datin Paduka Doctor Hajah Norlila binti Dato Paduka Haji Abdul Jalil, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, as Yang Berhormat Pehin's personal representative.
Earlier, Awang Suip bin Haji Abdul Wahab, the Acting Director of the Language and Literature Bureau in his speech explained that the Language and Literature Bureau will continue its positive initiatives to raise awareness among the citizens and residents on the importance of Malay Language in everyday life. He added that new strategic planning and approaches will continue to come up in further developing the Malay Language, be it in romanise and Jawi writing so that it can be utilised as a whole by the country's citizens and residents.
The Language Month 2017 was officiated by Datin Paduka Doctor Hajah Norlila, who also launched the Special Edition of Jurnal Beriga 1967 - 2017 in conjunction of its 50th Anniversary. The Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports also presented prizes to the winners of the Ilmiah Pangsura Essay Writing Competition 2016, and the Language and Literature Bureau Bahana Short Story Competition 2015. 101 excellent students also received prized for their 'O' Level Malay Language as well as their 'A' Level Malay Language and Literature. Also present was Yang Berhormat Awang Ong Tiong Oh, Member of the Legislative Council.
Source: Radio Television Brunei