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I hope you realise the title of this article is bad English. Unfortunately, many Malaysians have grown up hearing these expressions and think they are standard English.

Those who have learnt correct English purposely use these expressions only to blend in with the locals. This type of English is not accepted in exams. Here are some expressions some students use wrongly. There are many more, but these are the common ones.

borrow (lend)

Borrow me your pen! (X)
Could you lend me your pen? (√)

Can you borrow me RM5? (X)
Can you lend me RM5? (√)

on /off (Very common mistake. Use “switch on”)

On the light please. I want to read. (X)
Please switch on the light. (√)

I will off the fan. (X)
I will switch off the fan. (√)

tenses (Mentioning the time is not enough in English e.g. yesterday/tomorrow. You must use the correct tense.)

Yesterday I buy rice from the supermarket. (X)
Yesterday, I bought rice from the supermarket. (√)

Why you no come to my house? (X)
Why didn’t you come to my house? (√)

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