2 women told to wear sarong at govt building

2 women told to wear sarong at govt building
Premananthini and Tan Lee Fong were denied entry into the state secretariat building for wearing skirts deemed too short.
PHOTO: Facebook of Charles Santiago

SHAH ALAM - First, it was the Road Transport Department (JPJ). And then the Selangor government looked to also be joining in on the act by demanding that two women wear sarong or be refused entry into the state secretariat building.

The incidents came to light through a Facebook post by Klang MP Charles Santiago who said that a journalist and a resident who were invited for a press conference were denied entry for wearing skirts that stopped just above the knee.

Both were told to wear a sarong to cover their legs.

Journalist C. Premananthini, 32, said she was at the guardhouse for her visitor’s pass when a guard told her that her knee-length dress was too short.

One of the guards said to me: “Madam, may I inform you that your dress is short and you are not allowed to enter. If it is okay, we have a sarong here and you can wear it to enter.

“As the guard was saying this, another guard was holding a green sarong on a hanger,” she said.

Premananthini said she then asked the guard why was she being treated just like the woman in a June 8 incident at the Road Transport Department. She received no response.

The 34-year-old resident Tan Lee Fong, was also told by the guard to cover up her legs.

Tan was wearing a short sleeve black dress which ended slightly above her knees.

Premananthini, who was running late for the press conference, said she drove to another entrance and was allowed to go in. Tan managed to enter the building after wrapping a scarf around her legs.

What followed was much hue and cry over the incident on social media.

State secretary Datuk Mohammed Khusrin Munawi said the guard had acted on his own initiative.

“There are a set of general guidelines on dress code but we have never had rules for a sarong to be offered.

“We have called the guard for an explanation and he was given a stern written warning,” he said, apologising to Tan and Premananthini on behalf of the state government.

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