Saturday, January 1, 2011
Utusan must be in love with Teo Nie Ching to constantly give her so much of coverage
Women organisation representatives today slammed parties who have attacked Serdang MP Teo Nie Ching for wearing “tight clothes” at an aerobics event organised by a mosque earlier this month. According to Empower executive director Maria Chin Abdullah, the attention on her clothing was evidence of gender discrimination against female elected representatives. “This is a sad pattern. We see this even in election campaigns where female candidates are subjected to personal attacks about how they dress and who they associate with. “This happened in the case of (Seputeh MP) Teresa Kok, (Bukit Lanjan assemblyperson) Elizabeth Wong, and (Batu Gajah MP) Fong Poh Kuan, who has had to sustain racist remarks in Parliament,” said Chin when contacted. On Thursday, Malay daily Utusan Malaysia reported on its front page that Teo was “creating trouble again” by dressing in tight clothing while participating in an aerobics session in the car park of a mosque in her constituency. The mosque committee had invited the MP to participate in the event, which was part of their Maal Hijrah celebrations. Teo had attended event dressed in track pants and a white tee shirt.
'Why target Teo?'
Women's Aid Organisation president Meera Samanther concurred with Chin, and asked why Teo (below) has been a regular target for such remarks. The Serdang MP first came under Utusan's keen eye when they front-paged her wearing a “tight kebaya” and not covering her hair when she attended a surau event last August. “Why target her? Is it because she is female, vocal and in a position of power? “We are disappointed with such remarks but I would tell Teo that there will always be people who are unhappy, and she should ignore them and continue with her work,” said Samanther. Both women's rights activists also pointed out that Teo had attended the event as an invited guest of the mosque committee, whose members had no problems with her attire.