PEKAN, June 29 — The act of altering the country’s coat-of-arms (Jata Negara) is an insult which could not be forgiven, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah.
Saifuddin said those involved should receive heavy punishment without any compromise as the country’s coat-of-arms is the highest symbol of a country.
“I have deep regrets over the issue of the national symbol, as it should be treated with respect and when used it should be proper and ethical. When the country’s coat-of-arms is exhibited, it should be placed at the top with no other symbols above it…what’s more with putting unspeakable images.
“To me the act is very rude and we cannot compromise, I am confident police would investigate thoroughly and I hope whoever is guilty should be severely punished,” he said.
He was speaking to reporters after visiting the Chini by-election media centre in Salong here today.
According to him, all Malaysians should respect the national coat-of-arms just like the national flag.
In this regard, the excuse of the publisher of the controversial book, Chong Ton Sim who is also the director and founder of the printing company Gerakbudaya that the company did not intend to insult the national symbol and it was not done on purpose was unacceptable.
The book which used a visual similar to the national coat-of-arms garnered attention as the picture was said to be insulting the national symbol after the matter went viral on social media.
The drawing which looks like the national coat-of-arms displayed a naked child on the moon and star and the image of the two tigers was altered apart from adding a crocodile at the bottom which usually carries the national motto “Unity is Strength”.
Following the incident, various parties including non-governmental organisations and political parties had lodged police reports and called for stern actions against people involved.