KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 16 (Bernama) — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced an allocation of RM5 million for the publication of books on original work by young writers through the Malaysian Institute of Translation and Books (ITBM).
The allocation would be channeled in stages over a two-year period to ensure the production of original works from writers besides functioning as a lead agency in the field of translation, he said.
“This involved a rebranding of the institute to ITBM from its original name. The government is confident ITBM will manage the funds allocated to ensure the original work of writers can be published within three to six months.
“I am also announcing that Percetakan Nasional Berhad has agreed to form a strategic alliance with ITBM and the Malaysian National Writers Association (PENA) towards the success of this effort,” he said when speaking at the opening of PENA’s Golden Jubilee 50 years celebration here Friday night.
Also present were PENA chairman Dr Mohamad Saleeh Rahamad and ITBM managing director Khair Ngadiron.
At the ceremony, Najib also announced an allocation of RM1 million to renovate Rumah PENA.
The Prime Minister said the role of writers was important in the realization of the government to transform the country into an advanced and high income nation by 2020 as the progress was not measured in material gain alone.
“Achievements in thinking, literature and culture are equally important as a measure of progress for the individual.
“It is also true that the struggle of our political forefathers was inspired and aroused by the writings of our writers in the past,” he said.
Source : Bernama