M’sia urges Indonesia to drop plans to sue over folk song
A GOVERNMENT minister on Friday urged Indonesia to drop its claim of ownership over a Malay folk song used in Malaysia’s tourism campaign and focus instead on boosting bilateral ties.
The Indonesians have accused Malaysia of stealing the song Rasa Sayang, or Feeling of Love, from them and are considering suing.
Kuala Lumpur has rejected the allegations, which could spark a diplomatic row between the two neighbors.
Malaysian Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister Rais Yatim warned that Jakarta’s plan to sue for copyright was immature and would setback bilateral ties.
The song has its roots in the Malay archipelago which includes Indonesia, Malaysia, southern Thailand and Brunei, and is also sung by people in southern Africa and Sri Lanka, Mr Rais told reporters.
‘It is a backward move (to sue). Indonesia should have instead encouraged Rasa Sayang to be made the song of harmony for the Malay archipelago,’ he said.
We also sing that song in Singapore, especially during National Day season. I tend to agree with the Malaysians. That would be a perfect song for ASEAN unity.