KUCHING: Four tribal languages spoken in Sarawak are now extinct, according to the state Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP).
Sarawak DBP director Abang Haliman Abang Julai said according to researchers, the tribal languages that are now extinct are Seru, Pegu, Bliun and Lelak.
"Maybe the speakers have migrated or are in mixed marriages followed by the diminishing number of the tribal communities,” he said after the adjournment of the 2023 Sarawak Tribal Language General Database Workshop 2023 here today (March 19).
Abang Haliman said Sarawak DBP will be working with ethnic associations in Sarawak to record and document tribal languages, which are almost extinct.
He said he does not have the actual number of tribal languages that are almost extinct in Sarawak but he believed that among the tribal languages that are vanishing are those from the Kejaman and Lakiput tribes.
He also said they have managed to record between 5,000 and 6,000 Sarawak tribal words in their database this year.
Abang Haliman said apart from publishing a dictionary of the languages involved, Kuala Lumpur DBP will also take and discuss the words to be adapted into the national language. - Bernama