Four Malaysian individuals and two groups conferred Japan Foreign Minister’s Commendation

KUALA LUMPUR, On the basis of their outstanding contribution to promotion of exchange and mutual understanding between Japan and Malaysia, four Malaysian individuals and two groups are to receive this year’s Japanese Foreign Minister’s Commendation.

A statement from the Embassy of Japan issued on Saturday stated that those selected represent a wide range of backgrounds.

Among the individual recipients are Dr. Charles S. Vairappan, Professor of University of Malaysia Sabah (UMS); Associate Professor Kumaraguru A/L Ramayah of University Technology Malaysia (UTM); Hasparina Abdul Ghafar, Head of Japanese Language and Cultural Center, Malaysia-Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT); and Kenneth Ch’ng, President of the Malaysia Origami Association.

The two groups that were given recognition are Japanese Language Teacher Education Programmes at the Institute of Teacher Education International Languages Campus (IPGKBA) and Malaysia Kendo Association (MKA).

Prof Dr. Charles major contributions were in the joint research activities with Japanese research institutions through the Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development (SATREPS) project and JICA Third Country Training Program (TCTP) on biodiversity conservation in Sabah.

He is also the ambassador and visiting professor to four universities in Japan and had initiated high school student exchange programs between Malaysian students and Keisei Super Science High School via Sakura Science Project.

Under the leadership of Associate Professor Kumaraguru, UTM has become one of the hubs for Japanese language education in the southern region of Peninsular Malaysia.

Likewise Hasparina too has made outstanding contributions in promoting Japanese Language education in Malaysia.

Ch’ng founded the Malaysia Origami Association in 2014, dedicated to promote the art of paper-folding in Malaysia through university lectures and seminars by introducing how computational origami is being developed and how origami designs are used in fields such as medicine and architecture.

Of the two groups given recognition, IPGKBA has greatly contributed to training Japanese teachers in Malaysia while MKA plays an important role in the introduction and promotion the modern Japanese traditional art of Kendo in Malaysia.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency