More flag gaffes cause Twitter storm

The digital scoreboard during synchronised swimming duet event on Friday at the Aquatic centre in Bukit Jalil had used the wrong flag for Brunei. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Zainal Abdul Halim, August 20, 2017.

MORE boo-boos over the wrong use of flags of countries competing in the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games have come to light, just as Putrajaya apologised over a misprinted Indonesian flag in a souvenir programme.

The hashtag #ShameOnYouMalaysia was trending on Twitter today as Indonesians vented their anger over their flag being printed upside-down in the souvenir programme distributed to VIPs during the opening of the SEA Games yesterday.

Even as that incident festers, fresh allegations of gaffes in a newspaper and on a digital scoreboard are now making the rounds, propelled by the #ShameOnYouMalaysia hashtag.

The wrong flag of Brunei was used on the digital scoreboard during the synchronised swimming duet event on Friday at the Aquatic centre in Bukit Jalil.

Instead of the national flag of Brunei, Twitter users pointed out, the armed forces flag of the sultanate was used, which has an extra red stripe running diagonally across the centre.

It is unknown if Brunei officials have lodged an official protest over the use of the wrong flag.

Earlier, Indonesian Youth and Sports Minister Imam Nahrawi tweeted a picture of the offending page in the SEA Games souvenir book, and said it was “very painful”.

Malaysia has apologised to the Indonesian government, and the republic’s president, Joko Widodo, has called on his people not to dwell on the matter.

Indonesian netizens, still smarting from their upside-down flag printed in the official progamme book, were inflamed again when a newspaper’s SEA Games graphic centrespread was found to contain the same mistake.

CNN Indonesia reported that Metro Ahad had yet to comment on the mistake.

Metro Ahad's SEA Games graphic centrespread was found to have printed the Indonesian flag upside-down. – Twitter pic, August 20, 2017.

Ties between Malaysia and Indonesia are generally cordial, but occasional perceived slights or when  cases of an Indonesian maid being abused by a Malaysian employer come to light, passions in the republic flare up.

In the past, Indonesian media had accused Malaysia of appropriating cultural icons they claim to be exclusive to Indonesia, such as rendang, batik, nasi goreng and the song rasa sayang.

In 2009, Indonesia’s tourism minister demanded an explanation from Malaysia after a furore over a television advertisement with the theme “Enigmatic Malaysia” featured a Balinese dance. – August 20, 2017.

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