Despite public protests, there are still cases lately that government departments are still chasing away members of public who came to seek their help or service. Government departments should not impose dress code against members of the public, but, dress code, could perhaps, be imposed on government servants by heads of departments. The reason is government servants are under their control, but, not the public.
The law must be fair and just and if the dress code is unjust or arbitrary in the circumstances that would violate fundamental rights under the federal constitution. Can the government stop people from entering government institutions based on dress code?
There were cases lately that, members of the public were denied entry into police stations and government hospitals. Such refusal is against the concept of right to life. By this concept of right to life, no government servants could prevent members of public to seek help from government departments.
There are two main issues concerning dress code. First, is the government dress code comes within the constitution? Second, whether it is just and fair in the circumstances to deny entry to seek help from government departments in time of stress? I would say that a law that prevents members of public to come to police station to make police report of crimes could not be fair or just under the constitution. At the same time, a law that prevents patients to seek treatment in government hospital is not just because their lives were affected. They have right to life under Article 5 of the federal constitution.
The right to life under Article 5 federal constitution includes more than mere animal existence. Right to life includes the right to live with human dignity and all that goes along the concept of necessities to life. To seek protection from the police of a crime and to seek treatment in hospitals are necessities to life. For these reasons, I hope the government departments should no more chase members of public away from seeking help from them.
You could not impose morality policing on members of the public who enters into government buildings that come to seek help.
Perhaps dress code could be imposed in house of worship because prayers to seek God’s help and to give thanks to God could be done anywhere and not necessarily in house of prayers.
VOON LEE SHAN
President, Parti Bumi Kenyalang
11 March, 2023