When national language usage on KL Sentral’s signage gets in the way of political differences

A PRO-PAKATAN Harapan (PH) netizen has defended the directional signboard at Kuala Lumpur Sentral after a supposedly Opposition-slant supporter raised the issue of “killing the national language” by the prominent display of Mandarin translation which turned out to be the Japanese language.

CIKY🅰️NIE (@lady_bugg11) in her recent posting in X (formerly Twitter) took a swipe at one Bohari bin Ibrahim who expressed sadness at Malaysia’s largest transportation-cum- transit hub with his remark “language is the soul of the nation … to kill a race, kill its language first” (bahasa jiwa bangsa … nak bunuh bangsa, bunuhlah bahasanya).

Claiming that the social media posts on “KLIA Ekspres” and “KLIA Transit” have since been deleted by Bohari who is the account owner, @lady_bugg11 clarified that the Japanese text is made available “as a tribute to Dr Kisho Kurokawa who was the (award winning) architect who designed KL Sentral”.

More dual language signage at Kuala Lumpur Sentral (Pic credit: Booking.com)

“Even if the PM (Prime Minister) wants to kill the language, the killing of the language was done in 2001 when KL Sentral was opened,” asserted @lady_bugg11. “The PM at the time was an SG4 (abbreviation for coalition of four PAS-rule state governments) advisor is still being held in high esteem by PAS loyalists. His name is Mahathir (Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad).”

Doubtlessly, the pot shot by @lady_bugg11 who claims herself to be a chef and businesswoman elicited a barrage of brickbats at Bohari with netizen @VillarPerosa belittling Bohari for his “shallowness in various foreign writings (languages)” to @syahmi_fikrii who wondered if he wants to be a “PN cytro (Perikatan Nasional’s cybertropper).

“Looks like this is the first time Bohari stepped foot into Kl. Sure, this is cultural shock to him,” teased @arashxnaim with @iskandarrastman wondering if it is justifiable to blame the unity government for the matter.

“The signboard has been there for years yet all of a sudden this issue cropped up and you have to blame it in on the present government,” chided @iskandarrastman.

Added a more neutral @ManiamMKM: “This is educational …. Am so surprised that the Mahathir era deems it as proper to give due recognition to foreigners who had contributed!” – Dec 1, 2023

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