Swatch Says It Will Replenish Its Rainbow Watches & Still Put Them On Display
The Swiss watchmaker will also take legal action to recover its seized rainbow watches.
Days after the Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA) raided Swatch outlets around Malaysia to seize rainbow-coloured watches from its Pride Collection, the company has said that it will replenish the stock
A representative from Swatch Malaysia shared that they have received instructions from its Switzerland headquarters to restock the rainbow watches and display them on shelves, reported The Guardian.
The raid was carried out on 13 and 14 May across 11 Swatch outlets after an influencer on Facebook dared Malaysians to throw away their Swatch watches as the brand was perceived to be supportive of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer+ (LGBTQ+) community through its Pride Collection.
The timepieces are designed with rainbow stripes and a rainbow dial.
According to a summons notice the company shared with SAYS, the seizure was based on the Printing Presses and Publications Act of 1984, which has been criticised by rights groups as "draconian".
The notice stated that the watches were confiscated because they carried LGBTQ+ symbols.
Swatch will also take legal action to recover its rainbow watches
A Reuters report yesterday, 24 May, quoted Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger as saying that the company will take legal action to seek the return of the watches that were confiscated.
Swatch chief executive officer (CEO) Nick Hayek shared that he was disappointed and concerned by the ministry's raids, and reiterated that the watches' message of "peace and love" was not harmful to anyone.
"On the contrary, Swatch always gives a positive message of joy in life," he said in a statement.
"We wonder how the Enforcement and Control Division at the Ministry of Home Affairs will confiscate the many beautiful natural rainbows that show up thousand of times a year in the sky of Malaysia," he quipped.