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'Rona-Rona Bahasa Kita'wins CM's Book Award
Published on: Saturday, November 11, 2017

Sandakan: "'Rona-Rona Bahasa Kita", a book written by former Sabah Government Printing Department Director Datuk Jamdin Buyong, clinched the Sabah Chief Minister's Book Award this year.

Jamdin, 71, who is also a literary and cultural advocate, received RM5,000 and a certificate from Sabah Local Government and Housing Assistant Minister Datuk Zakaria Mohd Edris at a presentation ceremony here Thursday night.

He will also get 12 per cent of the royalty from sale of the book published by Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP).

Meanwhile, Sabah DBP Director Asmiah Ajamain noted the book was not only packed with knowledge but also contained useful tips on the use of proper Bahasa Melayu.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Tan Sri Musa Aman said during the award presenting ceremony that the State Government is committed to give recognition to book authors in Sabah.

"The government thinks highly of writers as they provide intellectual value to the society," he said in a speech read by Zakaria. Towards this end, funding was also allocated to complement the effort of improving the standards of writers.

He also said in today's digital era, most people will prefer e-books as the cost is cheaper, easier to bring and more accessible as they only have to buy them online.

"However, the demand for printed or hardcopy books will not cease. For me, what is more important is the interest to read."

He said in developed countries like the United Kingdom and US, millionaires can be produced through book writing.

"Such situation is not impossible if the culture of seeking knowledge is spread within the community regardless of age," he said. To this, he said the State Government will continue to create a conducive environment to encourage book writing in Sabah.

"I am sure Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP), too, has its own strategy to support this initiative.

"Nevertheless, by letting DBP working alone will surely hamper the aim of publishing 30,000 new book titles every year."

All quarters should work together to ensure its success.

Musa also urged all experts in various fields to fulfil the needs of the nation's book industry.

"Hopefully, our aim to become a developed nation by 2020 will move in parallel with the increase of book publication as recommended by the Unesco, apart from providing knowledge in line with TN50's objectives," he said. - Mardinah Jikur

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