Wed, 22 Nov 2000

Standardized Indonesian

Calls from various members of the public for better (grammatical) use of the Indonesian language have one thing in common, that is the importance of using the standard variety of Indonesian, especially for public figures.

I think that the setting up of a kind of TOEFL test for Indonesian by Pusat Bahasa, or the Center for Indonesian Language (The Jakarta Post, Oct. 4, 2000: Nation told to use proper Bahasa Indonesia), is the best way to go about reducing and overcoming the violations of the standard grammar and phonology of Indonesian, as expressed by Odo Fadloeli in his letter (The Post, Nov. 16, 2000).

Taking this standardized test should be made compulsory. All individuals, Indonesians and expatriates alike, particularly those having influential positions in society, should take the test. They must achieve a certain score before they can be recruited and/or promoted, or in the case of students, before they are admitted to educational institutions. It is useless to criticize the violators without trying to take some concrete action.


Makassar, South Sulawesi