South Tangerang Mayor Airin Rachmi Diany announced
on Wednesday the administration’s plan for all Muslim staff to wear
Muslim attire every Friday while non-Muslims should continue to wear their civil
Airin said that all male employees would
wear long-sleeve collarless shirts —locally known as baju koko — and the traditional black cone-shaped hat — known
as peci — while their female counterparts should wear hijab, a loose dress and a long white
skirt or loose pants. She believed this policy could have a positive effect
on employees’ working performance.
Similarly, Tangerang Mayor Wahidin Halim had earlier
said staff must wear Muslim clothes in an effort to build the administration’s
Commenting on this, deputy director of the Human
Rights Working Group (HRWG) Choirul Anam said that the mayor was
seriously mistaken in interpreting Islamic values.
“Accelerate physical development by building
public facilities, providing better health access and education — especially
for the poor — and implement monitoring to avoid corruption. These
are more Islamic than requiring people to wear
Muslim attire,” he told The Jakarta Post.
He said the mayor’s initiative was a clear
violation of the constitution and Home Affairs Minister Gamawan Fauzi
should conduct a thorough evaluation of the new policy.