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UMNO Politician Calls for Tourism Minister to be Fired for Making Bak Kut Teh Malaysia’s Heritage Dish


My Post 1 2024 03 01T141545.684
Source: Akmal Saleh | Facebook & New Straits Times

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So, a few days ago, Malaysian Heritage Commissioner Mohamad Muda Bahadin recently gazetted a series of 10 dishes as heritage foods of Malaysia in the Declaration of Heritage Object 2024. With Bak Kut Teh among the dishes, Malaysians were not happy.

Perak Assemblyperson for Gunung Semanggol, Razman Zakaria, even shared his 2 cents on why the dish shouldn’t be recognised as a national dish, as it involves pork, an ingredient that many Malaysians cannot eat.

Now, Umno politician, Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh, has taken to his Facebook page to call for Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing to either be fired or resign over the whole Bak Kut Teh incident.

Umno 1

He wrote, “Instead of recognizing Bak Kut Teh as a national dish, it is better to recognise other foods such as Chinese Fried Rice or many other dishes that can be eaten by all people in this country regardless of race or religion.”

“If a Minister cannot think about the sensitivities of the Malaysian people and what is relevant in making decisions, it is high time we request for PMX Anwar Ibrahim to just fire the Minister.”


He went on to share his opinion on why the Tourism Minister should be let go. 

“Because, if a Director-General of Tourism can be demoted due to poor performance, then the same reason can be used for Ministers who are not only performing poorly, but the Minister is the worst Minister in history,”

“Minister Kong Ka Li Kong (referring to Tiong Sing King) better resign!”


The Minister of Tourism responded!

Umno 2

Speaking in regards to Akmal Saleh’s statement in regards to him, Tiong has suggested that he refer to a dictionary if Akmal Saleh is unsure of the definition of Bak Kut Teh.

“Regarding Bak Kut Teh, the ‘Bak’ refers to meat. I have emphasised several times that the herbs used are Halal. The type of meat used can be changed. You can add chicken, then it becomes ‘Chi Kut Teh’. If you add seafood, it becomes ‘Seafood Kut Teh’. If you add lamb, it becomes ‘Kambing Kut Teh’,”

“On the other hand, Akmal mentioned ‘Babi (pork) Bak Kut Teh’ many times. Meanwhile, ‘Bak’ means meat in general, not just pork. I recommend Dr Muhamad Akmal refer to a dictionary if he is not sure of the definition,” he said.


Akmal Saleh went on to highlight that the Bak Kut Teh included in the Heritage list refers to the pork dish. 

“Did you know, the list included in the Declaration is ‘Bak Kut Teh’ instead of ‘Seafood Kut Teh’, “Chi Kut Teh’ and ‘Bak’ means meat specifically for pork in the Hokkien pronunciation? It is true that Bak Kut Teh can be changed into Halal meat according to you, but do you know how many Bak Kut Teh dishes are said to be Halal and sold in the market?”

“The answer is that almost all Bak Kut Teh that are sold have elements of pork,” he wrote.

He also called Tiong an extremist in his post and stands by his decision to call for him to be fired by the Prime Minister.


What do you think about this? Do feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section.


Also read: “That’s Chinese culture” – Tiong King Sing Tells Off Masjid Tanah MP for Bringing up His Drinking Habits

My Post 1 2023 11 01T103736.112

Source: Akmal Saleh

Follow us on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest stories and updates daily.

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