JOHOR BARU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A shop that sells Japanese healthcare and home products in Larkin Perdana, Johor Baru, has raised eyebrows with its "Bahasa Malaysia only" notice.
China Press reported that the outlet displayed a notice informing customers that Bahasa Malaysia would be used to conduct all promotion sessions.
The notice, in both Malay and Chinese, requested Chinese customers to patronise its other outlets that cater for their community.
The outlet manager told the daily that the company was trying to expand its market base to include more Malays and Indians and so it set up outlets in Ipoh, Kuala Lumpur and Johor that use Malay only.
She said initially, the company had mostly Chinese customers as its products were not certified halal. But some of them have since obtained the certification.
Having different premises for different races is only a marketing strategy, she said.
In September, a Muslim man in Muar put up a sign outside his launderette saying his machines were for Muslims only. The shop owner removed the offending signboard after being rebuked by the Johor Sultan. Another launderette in northern Perlis state, offering a "Muslims only" business, opened it to everyone after a visit from the Perlis mufti (the state's Islamic chief) and the Perlis crown prince.
Malaysia's nine Malay rulers issued a statement in October that said they were concerned the country's unity and harmony were being eroded by the onslaught of racially controversial issues.