Singlish: It's not for every situation

Singlish: It's not for every situation

SINGAPORE - We can be proud of our "lahs" and "lors", but experts say that it is still crucial that people speak proper English.

Mrs Wai Yin Pryke, principal of the English Language Institute of Singapore and committee member of the Speak Good English Movement (SGEM), believes that Singapore should continue to uphold the highest standards for English.

"The danger with Singlish is that because it comes about so naturally - we hear it all around us - some will incorrectly regard it as English and use it widely," she says.

"The fear is that they will then lose touch with English through a lack of practice.

"Use it or lose it, right?" she says.

The SGEM was launched in 2000 by then Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong to encourage Singaporeans to speak grammatically correct English that is universally understood.

It came amid concerns that Singlish was becoming the norm.

Mrs Pryke says that because English is a global language of commerce and business, Singapore, as a small country, needs to be plugged into this network.

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