A former PM has made the suggestion that Malay translation be available for the vernacular Chinese newspaper. His logic is that although most Chinese can read Malay papers, not many Malays know what is being reported in CHinese press.
This is what was reported in malaysianInsider:
“While Chinese people understand Malay language newspapers, most Malays don’t understand the Chinese press. Sometimes when the Chinese press say something harmful, people will not get the idea because of the lack of understanding,” said Mahathir.
I find this illogical. I read 3 languages, and I do not find the Chinese papers as outright racialist as the Malay papers. To ask the Chinese papers to come out with Malay translation would not be economically feasible, unless prices are raised which will add burden to the people who read the Chinese press.
Having said that, I think it is good for department heads in civil services as well as all ministers MPs, and ADUNs to know what is being reported in vernacular press. But it is not neccessary for the Chinese/Indian papers to come out with the translation.
What is required is to have a multiracial civil service, whereby a department head who cannot understand Chinese can ask one of his staff to monitor the Chinese press and let him know the gist of what is written.
This would enable the departmental heads to know the happenings and aspirations of a big segment of populations. This applies not only to Chinese press, but Indian and English press as well ( many department head cannot understand English now ).
SO it pays to have a multiracial work force, especially for those who are in positions which influence the lives of others..