Philippine Embassy in Berlin Launches Language Book and Mobile Phone App “Pinoy Ako” to Celebrate “Buwan ng Wika”
29 August, 2013 Berlin – Philippine Ambassador to Germany Maria Cleofe R. Natividad led the celebration of the “Buwan ng Wika” at the Philippine Embassy in Berlin through the launching of Filipino language books of Dr. Rey Agana and a Filipino language app for mobile phones called “Pinoy-Ako”.
In her welcome remarks, Ambassador Natividad speaking in both Filipino and English languages, reflected on the relevance of the theme “Wika Natin ang Daang Matuwid” in the celebration of the language month.
“The theme of this year’s celebration is particularly relevant and resonates well: “Wika Natin ang Daang Matuwid”. The theme is timely and apt – a few days ago, there was a million-strong people’s march against corruption in Manila.” She quoted from the speech of President Benigno S. Aquino III during the recent “Pambansang Kongreso ng Wika” and stressed the inherent value of the national language in achieving national goals of justice and peace, inclusive growth, and sustainable development.
The Ambassador also spoke on the role of language in strengthening ties among peoples: “Here in Berlin, I salute the efforts of Dr. Rey Agana in popularizing the Philippine language and finding innovative ways to spread its use, using different media: from formal classes at the Humboldt University, to publication of Filipino language books, and to Filipino-German dictionary apps for mobile phones.”
Prof. Dr. Vincent Houben, Chair of the Department of Southeast Asian History and Society at the Humboldt University in Berlin, also delivered his remarks on the importance of language in area studies during the book launch.
Ms. Eva Streifeneder of the Regiospectra Publishing House was also present during the event to support the book launch. Her team also made available copies of the Tagalog 1 and 2 books.
During the formal book launch, Dr. Rey Agana, who holds a doctorate degree in Semiotics from the Technische Universität Berlin, also gave remarks on the politics of language, his experience in teaching Tagalog at the Humboldt University, and his current and future work on the language books and apps.
The books (Tagalog 1 – Konversationkurs für Anfänger; Tagalog 2 – Lese- und Schreibkurs für Anfänger [Conversation Course for Beginners – Reading and Writing Course]) are available at the following website www.regiospectra.de . The mobile phone app “Pinoy Ako”, developed by Mr. Kevin Klein, is a German to Tagalog dictionary that translates words from both languages. It can be downloaded for free and can be easily installed in mobile phones. END