Speaking to attendees at the 11th Malay Language Public Speaking (PABM) 2017 competition finals, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said that the government wants to make Bahasa Melayu the main language of the regional body, ASEAN, and eventually, one of the world’s major languages.

“We will continue to uphold Bahasa Melayu and promote the national language at international level. As the country strives to become among the top 20 nations by 2050, I would like to see Bahasa Melayu as the main language in Asean. I also hope Bahasa Melayu will continue to symbolise the national identity.

“In the daily context, everyone should converse and use Bahasa Melayu correctly especially in terms of its grammar,” he said in his speech yesterday.

He also criticized the lax standards of Malay being used on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and SMS.

“I urge everyone to avoid using words in social media that can mar the beauty of Bahasa Melayu. Don’t follow the trend in social media as this can tarnish the language, especially its grammar.”

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