Mayor: It was only advice, not ruling


ALOR SETAR: The Alor Setar City Council (MBAS) has denied coming up with a ruling that requires non-Muslim models to be decently attired in billboards.

Its mayor Datuk Mat Noh Ahmad clarified that he had never said those who flouted the ruling would be slapped with a RM300 fine and have their offensive billboards removed.

“I only advised the advertisers to have their female Muslim models wear the tudung while for the non-Muslim models, their attire displayed on billboards should be appropriate,” he said.

Asked to define appropriate, Mat Noh said that the attire should not be revealing.

“This practice is encouraged to respect the sensitivities of the public,” he said, adding that it was never a ruling in the first place.

As for a newspaper report on Thursday which quoted him as saying that those who flouted the ruling would be fined and have their billboards removed, Mat Noh said rules needed to be gazetted first.

“I only asked for their cooperation on the matter,” he explained.

Asked what action the council would take against advertisers that portray models in revealing attire, Mat Noh replied that those advertisements would not be approved.

He also urged those who criticised the council to check with him first before condemning it in the media.

Mat Noh was commenting on a statement by Kedah MCA chairman Datuk Chong Itt Chew in a report yesterday that the council should consult the people first before coming up with a ruling that requires non-Muslim models to be decently attired in billboards.

Meanwhile, Beliawanis MCA chairman Tee Hooi Ling urged the council to illustrate examples of what sort of clothing are deemed acceptable for billboard portrayal.

“I am sure that no respectable advertiser would want to incur the wrath of the public by intentionally showcasing scantily-clad models to sell their products,” added Tee.

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