A Malaysian government advertisement in Chinese-language newspapers that portrayed a rooster barking to mark the Chinese lunar New Year has become the subject on ridicule on social media. According to Chinese zodiac, the year of the rooster has just concluded.
The official advertisement was published on Thursday to mark the Year of the Dog. The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry of Malaysia later described the advertisement as the result of an “technical error”, AFP reported. Ethnic Chinese account for a quarter of Malaysia’s population.
Not everyone on Twitter, however, seemed convinced by the apology. Some accused the government of using the rooster instead of a dog because followers of Islam consider canines to be unclean. Some social media users criticised the advertisement and questioned the department’s decision to publish it.
Malaysian businesses are purportedly avoiding the use of dog images to mark the Chinese New Year in order to not ruffle any feathers in Muslim-majority Malaysia, Reuters reported.