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Opinions ... in ... translation?

Your opinion please!

I want two certified translations of my Malaysian Birth Certificate (MBC).

Option One:
Cost: RM 30 per side of MBC = RM 60
Location: Courthouse, Jalan TAR, KL
Time: 30 mins

Option Two:
Cost: RM 50 per MBC = RM100
Location: PJ Section 19 (relatively closeby)
Time: 1 business day

Option Three:
Cost: RM 50 per MBC (two copies) = RM 50
Location: Wangsa Maju, hard to find according to even the person manning the phone!
Time: 3 business days

Which seems like the better option?

Here’s the story that has lead me up to this decision:

So I have hoops to jump through.
One seemingly simple one just got complicated, as you can see.

All I needed originally was just a certified copy of my birth certificate. So the hoop would have been to get someone who is eligible to do the “certified true copy” thing. Not *that* big a deal.


I clarified: after all, the thing is in Malay. Do you want a translation? Not immediately, no, but recommended that I get a translation anyway, for future use.


So I went to the nearby Registration Department Office (JPN) at PJ NewTown this morning – after all, my mother had a sample of an “extract” of birth records on a bilingual form for my dad, so it’s not a huge leap to assume I could get one done for me there.


The office had been “downgraded” to “just dealing with MyKad” and nothing more since Jan 2005. Anything apart from MyKad stuff I had to go to Putrajaya, Shah Alam, or Maju Junction @ Jalan TAR.

Went to Maju Junction @ Jalan TAR.

Asked if I could get an extract of my birth record, in English.

“Sorry, everything is in Malay.”

[me: (silently) Oh *^&%#^@)_)(&(*^^%#@$!%! But you USED to have bilingual forms?!!]

“You can get translation done at the courthouse down the road, maybe you can try there?”

    It got me thinking… on one hand, in an attempt to underscore the use of ONLY Malay in government departments, I suppose it made sense to keep everything in Malay. Besides, like this, one creates plenty of job opportunities for people to provide translation services, eh?

Anyways – so I walked the length of Jalan TAR from Maju Junction to the courthouse.

Went up to a Mak Gad (female security officer) and asked her where I could get translations done, I was sent here by the guy from JPN.

She gives me a phone # to call, of someone within the court system (who I guess does this translation thing on the side?). This lady turns out to be on leave, but asks me to come back at 1pm tomorrow and she can churn it out for me within 30 mins (this is Option #1 above).

Okay, noted.
But I did kinda want to get a bit more progress on this today.

So I asked a few friends via sms if they knew of any translation services, and got two recommendations: a few phone calls later, I managed to get info on Options #2 & 3.




Oh sorry ...

So: Gotta choose something here… but there are some things to keep in mind:
  • Does anyone know if the “other side” of the MBC (mainly chops indicating vaccination of BCG, etc) needs to be part of the translation? According to the person at Option #3, there’s no need for that. The person at Option #2 seemed amused that I would ask, and said if I wanted it, she’d do it at no cost. The person at Option #1 said she charged RM30 per side.

  • On the certified aspect: Option #1 seems to be a “side business”, but if this person is located at the courthouse maybe it’s easier to get it “certified” too? Option #2 said all they do is have their own chop on the thing, that’s what they’ve been doing all these years. Didn’t bother asking Option #2 about that: they seem to be a “national body” so I’m assuming they are good enough.

So: which option should I take? Or does anyone have other ideas?

I don’t have to do this *now* now, but it would be nice to get it out of the way asap.

If I’m not hung up about timeliness, I think Option #3 looks like the best?

Btw, I *did* take a stab at translating it myself. I got stuck at “perakuan beranak” : is that declaration / certification / announcement of birth? Ugh. I very quickly figured I’d save myself the headache and get someone else to do the translation for me lah.

The question, again, is which of the three options above, if any, will I bless with my patronage?

Whaddaya think?


  1. Whatever options you choose, it won't hurt you, in terms of money. The choice should be convenience and fun.

  2. Maverick> fun? wow, you've certainly a different perspective :-) I like the idea of exploring Wangsa Maju Section 10, might be "fun", LOL!

    But just for the record, it will "hurt" moneywise, what with me being a jobless bum and all, but I suppose I can look at it as the cost of translation overriding one torture a.k.a. massage session :p



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