The words “except saree” on a controversial Ipoh city council invitation card actually mean that guests can wear “sarees, office wear or appropriate clothing”, says the city council, according to a news report.
The council statement came after a photograph of the invitation card was circulated online, drawing accusations of discrimination.
The card was for council employees to attend a Hari Raya Aidilfitri gathering on Friday.
The dress code stated on the card was for Malay staff to wear national costume while staff from other communities could wear “traditional clothes except saree”, Star Online reported.
But the council said yesterday that the dress code had been misinterpreted.
“The confusion arose due to misunderstanding. When it says ‘except saree’, it means the staff can wear a suitable saree and those who work in the field can make a choice to wear a saree, office wear, or anything that is appropriate for the ceremony,” the council was quoted as saying.
“We have never intended to offend anyone, especially in the month of Ramadan where the Muslims and the non-Muslims are encouraged to respect and forgive each other. Therefore, we hope that this matter can be settled amicably,” the report said.