The personality of Malaysians should be highlighted through the use and appreciation of the national language by all citizens regardless of race and religion to achieve the spirit of ‘1Bahasa, 1Malaysia’, said Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

The Deputy Prime Minister said the national language was not only for the Malays but also for the Chinese, Indians, Iban, Kadazan and all other ethnic groups in the country.

“The national language represents the identity and strength of a particular country and forms an important platform for the development of a nation-state,” he said when opening the Seminar on National Language and the Chinese Community at the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP), here Monday.

Muhyiddin said he was proud of the efforts made by the DBP and several non-governmental organisations (NGOs) from the Chinese community, including the Malaysian Association of Translators and Creative Writers (PERSPEKTIF) in organising the seminar to discuss the best method of empowering the national language with the objective of moulding a nation-state that was united.

“I understand that the seminar is being held to evaluate and appreciate the role played by the Chinese community in empowering the national language.

“It is a positive move particularly in re-evaluating the existing approach and planning follow-up actions with potentials to strengthen solidarity among the various communities through the use of the national language with the involvement of the Chinese community collectively and significantly,” he said.

Muhyiddin, who is also the Education Minister, said the one-day seminar could find the best way to enhance the effectiveness of the implementation of the National Language Policy and this would be implemented seriously and continuously in future.

He said he fully supported the efforts to hold the Language and Literary Festival and the creation of the Solidarity Promotion Fund aimed at promoting the use of the National Language as a language of unity in Private Chinese Secondary Schools, and Chinese and Tamil National Type Schools.

He also said that the Education Ministry, through the DBP, had agreed to conduct a series of training to strengthen the national language among teachers who taught ‘Bahasa Malaysia’ in private Chinese schools. — BERNAMA