Language | Friday, September 7, 2012 | sundanesecorner.org
On September 16th, 2006 the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Indonesia, in cooperation with Sundanese Department of Indonesian University of Education, organized a workshop on the translation of RI Constitution into Sundanese in Bandung, West Java. I myself was one of the participants.
‘One should recognize the important role of regional languages in the dissemination of understanding of the basic laws of the Republic of Indonesia. It is believed that for speakers of the regional languages, the manuscript of 1945 Constitution will be more easily understood if it is translated into their own regional languages. Therefore, the Constitutional Court takes an initiative to translate the 1945 Constitution into various regional languages, one of which is Sundanese,’ said the organizing committee in its term of reference.
As far as Sundanese literacy is concerned, such an initiative is not new. Just take a look at old local newspapers from the time of Revolution, and one can recognize how the same initiative was demonstrated by Indonesian nationalists even when Indonesia’s independence from colonialism had just been proclaimed.
On Monday, August 20th, 2605 (1945), just three days since RI founding fathers Soekarno and Hatta proclaimed the Independence, Warta Priangan Syuu newspaper issued a Sundanese translation of the preamble of 1945 Constitution. The paper was published in Bandung, and the publisher was Bandung Brach of the Newspapers Association of Java. It was a Sundanese publication.
The translation of the preamble of 1945 Contitution issued on the paper, in its Sundanese spelling of that time, reads as follow:
Satemen-temenna kamerdikaan teh hakna oenggal-oenggal bangsa, djeung koe sabab eta atoeran pendjadjahan di alam doenja teh koedoe dileungitkeun sabab henteu sadjalan djeung rasa kamanoesaan djeung kaadilan.
Djeung perdjoeangan pergerakan kamerdikaan Indonesia geus nepi kana sa’atna noe bagdja djeung salamet-santosa nganteur Rajat Indonesia kana panto Nagara Indonesia, noe merdika, sabibiloeloengan, ngabogaan daolat, adil djeung mahmoer.
Koe berkahna Rahmat Toehan Noe Maha Kawasa, djeung disoeroeng koe angen-angen loehoer, soepaja boga kahiroepan kabangsaan noe bebas, koe djalan ieu Rajat Indonesia ngakoe kana kamerdikaan sorangan.
Lian ti eta pikeun ngawangoen Pamarentahan Nagara Indonesia noe nangtajoengan sakoemna bangsa Indonesia djeung sakoeliah lemah tjai Indonesia, djeung pikeun ngamadjoekeun karahardjaan oemoem, ngamadjoekeun kahiroepan bangsa, djeung miloe ngalaksanakeun katartiban doenja, noe didadasaran kamerdikaan, kaakoeran noe langgeng djeung kaadilan sosial, nja disoesoen kamerdikaan kabangsaan Indonesia teh dina hidji Oendang-oendang Dasar Nagara Indonesia, noe diwangoen dina hidji soesoenan nagara Repoeblik Indonesia noe rajatna boga daolat djeung didadasaran koe: Katoehanan Noe Maha Esa, kamanoesaan noe adil djeung adab, Indonesia noe ngahidji, djeung karajatan noe dipingpin hikmat-kabidjaksanaan dina permoesjawaratan-perwakilan, bari djeung ngawoedjoedkeun hidji kaadilan sosial keur sakoemna rajat Indonesia.
The text of the proclamation of Indonesian Independence issued on the page wasn’t translated into the language. The rest of the page announced the results of meeting of the Preparatory Committee for the Independence of Indonesia held in Jakarta on August 18th, 1945, which affirmed the stipulation of RI constitution, election of president and vice president, and establishment of the National Committee to assist the president for a while. On the same page there was also the announcement of the National Committee of Indonesia.