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PKR MP Says Her Speech Linking Timah To 'Drinking A Malay Woman' Was Misunderstood

The Tangga Batu MP has offered an apology to those who were offended.

Cover image via Rusnah Aluai (Facebook) & Winepark

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Rusnah Aluai, a member of Parliament (MP) for Tangga Batu, has issued a statement to address her speech in the Parliament where she likened drinking a whiskey named Timah to "drinking a Malay woman"

The Tangga Batu MP, who is aligned with PKR, took to her Facebook page last night, 29 October to say that she has received feedback on her speech in the Parliament on Thursday, 28 October.

According to Rusnah, all she had wanted to do was to make sure there is no confusion about the label of the local whiskey brand Timah for its name and image, but her speech was "misunderstood".

"Although my original intention was to ensure that no confusion arose regarding the label, my speech was misunderstood," she wrote in Bahasa Melayu without offering any explanations about her remark.

The MP then offered an apology to those who were offended.

"Therefore, to those offended by the speech, I apologise.

In the Parliament, Rusnah had claimed that the brand name 'Timah' is "really confusing" and that the issue was "very bad for women"

She had suggested that the alcohol name should be changed to avoid depicting Malay women in a bad light.

"On the brand name Timah, can't it be called 'The Mines', for example, or whatever. It also does not represent a good picture of women as it gives the impression that Timah is a Malay woman such as Kakak Timah, Mak Timah, and Mak Cik Timah... It is as if we are drinking Malay women," she said.

This is despite the fact that the name Timah means "tin" in Bahasa Melayu and something that the Puchong-based manufacturer, Winepak International, had already addressed earlier this year.

Amidst the ongoing controversy, the government has announced that the manufacturer has agreed to consider changing the Timah name

In a statement, the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP) said the company has requested one week to discuss the matter with its shareholders and board of directors.

Image via Winepark

Last year, the locally-made double peated blended whiskey became the country's first whiskey to be globally recognised:

Read more about the controversy here: