What started as a baju kurung without a button suddenly became sensational news across the country. The school insists that there is no such ruling to stop non-Malay student from wearing baju kurung, the uncle and guardian of the student involved insists that such ruling exists since 2009 as told to the media, politicians and NGOs jumped into the fray and worse of all, the ugly side of human character emerged when the senior assistant of the school, Sekolah Menengah Seri Mutiara told the student’s uncle to seek BRIM assistance when he said he did not have the ready cash to buy the pinafore uniform the school insisted his niece wear to school.
Which is the correct version of the whole incident? Whatever it may be, the school owes it to all Malaysians to come clean and the senior assistant (penolong kanan) of the school must apologize for the insult done to the family of Britney Nicole over his or her remarks regarding BRIM assistance. If the incident is just as simple as a missing button, why there is no one coming forward to offer a temporary pin until the button can be sewn?
Throughout my secondary school years, I wore baju kurung instead of the pinafore. There were quite a lot of non-Malay students who wore the baju kurung and we were proud of it. We wore it with great honor because it is one of our national attire. Never for once it ever came across our mind that baju kurung is only for the Malays or Muslims. Race and religion before the days of lunatics from Perkasa, Isma and the likes of Ridzuan Tee Abdullah were simple and straight forward.
Nobody will associate non-Malay wearing the baju kurung with having the intention to convert to be a Muslim or tarnishing the good name of Islam, nor will the parents or the elders of our Muslim friends mention that it is against the practice of their religion when they wear the cheongsam or the traditional costumes of our Iban or Kadazan brothers and sisters on certain occasions. We celebrate our diversity, we embrace each other, we tolerate each other and we respect each other’s religion practices. We were taught of the good values of each race and religion. Those were the good old days of Malaysia during what I call our golden era of the 90s.