UM student associations want university to drop new dress code

KUALA LUMPUR: Student associations in Universiti Malaya (UM) are calling on the administration to retract the newly implemented dress code announced last Wednesday.

Suara Siswa Universiti Malaya president Abqari Annuar said the dress code would only burden and inconvenience the students.

"It's because clothing is a subjective matter, where attire considered appropriate for an event may receive conflicting views from various parties.

"Students' comfort should be a priority and setting permissible and non-permissible attire only complicates things for us," he said.

Abqari also said the broad authority given to university staff to issue verbal or written warnings was arbitrary, and it could lead to abuse of power and victimisation of students.

"There are more pressing issues that remain unresolved which the university could look at, including module registration issues, traffic flow, accommodation and outdated facilities.

"However, the university management seems more interested in focusing on trivial matters," he said.

Universiti Malaya Association of New Youth (UMANY) president Ten Kang Yeaw said the administration has been repeatedly introducing conservative policies.

"From the previous Concert Guidelines, they have been gradually undermining UM's secular and progressive stance, gradually distancing the institution from its position as the country's leading university," he said.

"If any students are penalised by the university under this dress code, we urge the affected students to contact us and we will consider taking legal action to sue the university in court to ensure that our students' rights are safeguarded," he said.

Previously, UMANY has vehemently opposed the university concert guideline as means of supporting the independence of university students.

It has also submitted a formal enquiry to the Higher Education Ministry, which marks the beginning of a possible judicial review.

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