A transvestite contest causes a stir in Sumatra.
Transvestites and cross-dressers are unusually common sights in Indonesia with, it seems, every second presenter of celebrity gossip shows on television being one. The tolerance shown towards transvestites even comes from government circles as can be seen in Riau province, Sumatra, where local officials sponsored a transvestite contest to celebrate the New Year. Not all are happy with this state of affairs however.
A group of about 100 Muslimahs marched to the local parliament building in the provincial capital city, Pekanbaru, to protest against the immorality of it all. Without success they demanded to meet the house speaker, presumably to tell him:
The plan to hold a transvestite contest means that the Riau government supports the existence of transvestites and that will lead to free sexual activity.
So said Elvira Rosa, chairman of the Muslim Women’s Network who also added that the existence of transvestites was not legally recognised by Indonesia, and that the contest, which was scheduled to be held in a hotel in Pekanbaru, was forbidden under Islamic teachings.