Beer fes­ti­val never a M’sian cul­ture — Nazri

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KUALA LUMPUR: Hav­ing a big beer fes­ti­val is never a Malaysian cul­ture and should not be made a part of it in any way, said Tourism and Cul­ture Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Mo­hamed Nazri Ab­dul Aziz.

He said the Na­tional Cul­ture Pol­icy drafted in 1971 had out­lined, among oth­ers, that the na­tional cul­ture must be based on the in­dige­nous cul­ture of this re­gion with Is­lam as an im­por­tant com­po­nent in the for­mu­la­tion of it.

“Please un­der­stand, don’t think that we banned all this be­cause we are an Is­lamic coun­try, but it is not our cul­ture, whether we are Malays, Chi­nese, In­dian, Kadazan or Iban to have a big fes­ti­val for beer,” he said when speak­ing at the In­sti­tute of Diplo­macy and For­eign Re­la­tion ( IDFR) Cul­tural Diplo­macy Lec­ture Se­ries.

Mo­hamed Nazri said, the sit­u­a­tion dif­fers for in­stance, in Ger­many or Bavaria as those two were beer- drink­ing coun­tries and the beer pro­duc­ers.

“They can have Oc­to­ber­fest, be­cause they want to pro­mote their beers, they are beer-drink­ing coun­tries and pro­duc­ers, it is un­der­stand­able, but here, we don’t pro­duce beer,” he said.

How­ever, he ex­plained that ban­ning such a fes­ti­val did not mean that drink­ing beer was to­tally dis­al­lowed in the coun­try.

“They can drink in the pub, where you can con­trol the crowd in case some­one get ex­cited and drunk, but to have a fes­ti­val where you can­not con­trol the crowd, there might be fights, some peo­ple get drunk and they don’t know what they are say­ing.

“Just like four to five years ago we have this rave party ... Malaysians don’t know how to ap­pre­ci­ate the pub­lic dee­jay, they went for drugs and eleven peo­ple died so that’s why we stopped this beer fes­ti­val,” he added. — Ber­nama

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