Malaysiakini News

Guan Eng defends statement in Chinese, gets slammed by Mydin boss

Published:  |  Modified:

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng tonight defended the move by his team to issue trilingual statements when he addressed the Tun Razak Exchange issue on Thursday, which included Malay, English and Chinese.

However, the Facebook statement he issued tonight to defend the trilingual statement was done purely in Chinese, eliciting a barrage of negative reactions from those who could not understand and had to rely on the social media platform's translation tool.

Among those who criticised Lim was Mydin hypermarket boss Ameer Ali Mydin.

"All statements when released in Malaysia should first be in Bahasa Melayu, then English, then any other language (if) necessary.

"If you are in London, then I presume you will release it in English first then the translation can be (in) Bahasa/Mandarin/French etc.

"If you were in China, then at a press conference in China, release it in Mandarin first, then English etc.

"I would think that is more logical. We never had an issue before (in) the last 61 years, why create one now?" he said.

Mydin's comment received the most reaction on Facebook, putting it at the top of the list.

"Are you a minister of the Malaysian government or Chinese government?

"Supposedly its a statement by the finance minister of Malaysia but it doesn't use the national language so all can understand," said Muadz Abu Hanzalah.

Others questioned Lim's previous statement that he is "Malaysian" when asked what he thought about being the first Chinese finance minister since Tan Siew Sin occupied the position.

"'I am not Chinese, I am Malaysian'. National language? What is that?" said Ahmad Zahiruddin Saruju.

The commenters did not appear to take issue with the trilingual statements that Lim was defending, but instead the more recent statement that was only in Chinese.

In the statement tonight, Lim had defended issuing a trilingual statement, stressing the country's multilingualism.

He was responding to the "Friends of BN" Facebook page which had questioned why his statement on TRX included a Chinese version and was it to help the Chinese media.

Lim stressed that he will continue to issue statements in Malay, English, and when necessary, Chinese.

At the time of writing, the Chinese statement had been uploaded for five hours. No translation was available.

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