Dec 6, 2006

MB Kelantan defends dress code

(The Star) Mentri Besar Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat has defended the move to slap a RM500 fine on indecently dressed women workers in restaurants and retail outlets, saying it will help protect their virtue.

Women working in such businesses, he added, should respect the customs, culture and religious values of Kelantan when in public.

“A woman who wears an indecent outfit does not respect herself, so how can she expect men to respect her?” he said.

He said a woman's morality was something precious and should be guarded.

“Why do people keep their money in wallets or purses instead of walking about with it openly?” he retorted yesterday.

“This is because cash is something precious, just like a woman’s virtue.

The Kota Baru Municipal Council (MPKB) has announced that it will “no longer tolerate indecent dressing” by women, both Muslim and non-Muslim, noting that under local council by-laws, women who “dressed sexily or indecently” could be fined up to RM500.

It has also been reported that the MPKB can also fine the employers of “indecently dressed women.”

Nik Aziz said the council and the religious authorities had tried for years to generate awareness on proper attire in public but some women here had continued to be stubborn.

According to Nik Aziz, there was no denying that men would be aroused by a scantily- dressed woman, as this was human nature.

“It is an Islamic ruling, so nobody should undermine or question it,” said the PAS spiritual adviser, after closing a spiritual enrichment programme for women NGO Purnama here.

The programme was organised by the Tok Kenali Foundation, managed by former Lunas assemblyman Saifuddin Nasution. Also present was Nik Aziz’s wife, Datin Tuan Sabariah Tuan Ishak.

Under the council's dress code for women employed in retail outlets and restaurants, Muslims should wear outfits which reach down to their ankles as well as a tudung (headscarf), while non-Muslims should not wear outfits which expose their navels, show a lot of cleavage and emphasise the buttocks.

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