Celeb Neelofa apologises for launch of Muslim headscarves in a nightclub – but few are convinced

Neelofa has issued a public apology after being hit with criticism over the launch of her new range of Muslim headscarves at a nightclub.
Facebook/ Neelofa

Malaysian celebrity-entrepreneur-model Neelofa, better known as Noor Neelofa Mohd Noor, inadvertently got herself in hot water after launching her new line of Muslim headscarves, or hijabs, at a nightclub.

Neelofa celebrated her 29th birthday on Monday (Feb 26) with a launch of her latest personal branded headscarf product range called Be Lofa at Zouk Kuala Lumpur.

The stunt incited backlash from Bumiputera and Muslim rights group Perkasa’s women’s wing, demanding her repentance for the insensitivity, The Malay Mail reported.

Head of Perkasa’s Wiranita wing, Marini Nasution, said the dance performance at the launch event as depicted in online videos was not suitable to promote headscarves.

“Wiranita Perkasa wishes to advise Neelofa to immediately repent and turn over a new leaf,” Marini said in a statement.

In an earlier statement, Marini questioned Neelofa’s claims of suitability of the theme and cheap sponsorship costs as justification for holding the event at the nightclub.

She also suggested that the launch could have been held elsewhere for much less at venues such as shopping malls or halls.

Marini said: “Is this a valid reason? Is enjoining good in an area full of vice acceptable by Allah SWT? Are there no other places that are suitable for the purpose of the promotion with even better prices?”

Marini also prompted Neelofa to refer to Muslim holy scripture and Islamic teachings on headscarves or to refer to Perkasa’s Islamic affairs bureau chairman.

Neelofa has since taken responsibility over the controversy and has issued a personal apology on her Facebook account on Thursday (Mar 1), reported The Star Online.

She added that her team would be more stringent in the future to preserve the image of their product.

“Moving forward, we will make sure that we continue to brand hijab to its true potential from here on,” she said.

Neelofa shared the company’s previous statement which mentioned that they were taking immediate corrective steps to make amends.

The company clarified that organisers had removed all alcoholic branding, bottles, glasses and cutlery prior to the launch.

Access to the bar and other clubs were sealed off and smoking was prohibited during the course of the event.

Nonetheless, social media users have not been very forgiving despite her apology, with some claiming the entire incident to be a publicity stunt for her benefit.

In the wake of the furore, Federal Territories mufti Datuk Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri advised Neelofa to follow the true Islamic tenets in her daily life and activities as a Muslim.