[nst] There is a need to master English’
- From: .. pluto <. pluto@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Sat, 10 Sep 2005 07:34:55 +0800
Saturday, September 10 2005, 7:34:00 AM
There is a need to master English?
GEORGE TOWN, PENANG, Thurs.
English is so important in today?s world that it has become almost
This sums up the feelings of former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad,
who says simple acquaintance with the language alone is not enough for new
technologies to be learnt.
"There is a need for English to be completely mastered because the
instructions are no longer going to be simple," he said at the Ninth MSC
International Advisory Panel meeting.
"It is unfortunate perhaps for the language nationalists but that is the
reality today. They must not blight the future generations by objecting to
the mastery and usage of the English language. They must not obstruct
Malaysia?s progress and development."
Dr Mahathir was in his usual forthright style on this and several other
issues, such as the shortage of scientists, during his luncheon talk and
the Press conference afterwards.
? On the lack of self-confidence among graduates:
"Their communication skills are so poor that sometimes they cannot even
relay what they want to express in their own language. There is absolute
silence when an interviewer asks them questions... how is anyone going to
employ people like that?
"If you show a blank face to the person who is interviewing you, then you
are not going to get the job... it will not matter if you have a Master?s
? On poor communication skills among young Malaysians:
"It is almost cultural... Malaysians are shy. They need special coaching."
? On the system of teaching in schools:
"We cannot go on teaching in the old way anymore. We have to make use of
new methods like using more software.
"You have multiple-choice questions where all the student does is tick the
answer... they don?t write essays or take oral examinations. That is bad."
? On the need to welcome foreign scientists:
"This is not about asking foreigners to take over what is rightfully ours,
this is about research... if we do not take them, others will.
"Malaysia is a multi-racial country and in future, all countries will be
multi-racial. For Malaysia to accept a few foreign scientists, it will not
change the composition of the population of this country much.
"Today, Silicon Valley (in California) is full of Pakistanis, Indians,
Iranians, Chinese and even Arabs."
? On reports that all kinds of restrictions and conditions have been
imposed on foreign scientists wanting to come to Malaysia:
"Some of them are turned away because they fail the language test. Do we
want scientists or language experts?"
? On innovation and the Malaysian mindset:
"We are not confident enough to innovate and have the tendency to do what
has been done by others.
"Civil service officers appear to be very suspicious of researchers and
innovators, especially with regard to money... if there is the slightest
suspicion, the project would be called off.
"In time, we will produce enough of our own scientists with the mindset for
R&D and perhaps those in charge of funds will understand that R&D is not
like doing business."
[pluto note: the above is a verbatim copy and paste message without any comment from me. If i have any comment, it is in square brackets thus [pn...]
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