After being called out for breaching Malaysia’s COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOP) during her newborn baby’s tahnik ceremony, Malaysian singer Siti Nurhaliza has issued a statement to clarify matters.
Netizens were upset that the tahnik ceremony, which involves touching the lips of a newborn baby with honey or dried dates to commemorate the birth, was attended by a well-known religious preacher who doesn’t reside in the same state and was therefore thought to have travelled interstate for the event, which is a breach of the country’s COVID-19 SOP.
Others commented on Siti’s Instagram post, calling her out for holding such an event when COVID-19 cases were soaring in the country.
The 42-year-old singer, who welcomed her second child – a son named Muhammad Afwa – on Apr 19, released a media statement which she posted on Instagram on Monday (May 3) to clarify that the preacher agreed to attend the ceremony because he was in town for work and did not violate the travel ban.
She explained that the Apr 26 event did not breach the SOP as “no interstate activities took place”.
“Instead, the individual agreed to attend because he happened to be in Kuala Lumpur on the day of the ceremony,” she said.
She added that the ceremony and number of guests complied with the conditions for gatherings and events under the country’s movement control order. She went into detail in her post with regards to how the ceremony was divided into three sessions, each with a limited number of guests.
Siti added that she and her husband have never taken the SOPs lightly are ready to cooperate with the authorities if necessary.
She ended her statement by saying that this was the last time she would address the issue as she wanted to concentrate on her confinement period.
This incident comes a week after fellow celebrity, Neelofa, and her family were fined a total of RM60,000 (US$14,600) for violating COVID-19 restrictions during her Mar 27 wedding and a trip to Langkawi that took place soon after.
Neelofa has incurred the wrath of netizens once again after being accused of travelling interstate, after she posted a photo on Instagram Stories on Sunday of herself buying carpets in Nilai, Negri Sembilan.