M’sia’s Pageant Problem: Contestant Forced To Prove She’s Non-Muslim

Scrolling through the internet for some hot tea, we suddenly came across this interesting article. It was about a Sabahan girl who had to prove she was a non-muslim to enter a local beauty pageant. Wait, what??

Hype My reported, Nurul Yanadido, a finalist for UN Kota Marudu 2019 was forced to produce her baptism certification because her name sounded very “Muslim”.

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Nurul Yanadido Finalis UN Kota Marudu 2019 Viral di Media sosial tempatan mengenai insiden si gadis manis ini yg terpaksa membawa Surat pembaptisannya untuk mendaftar di UN KM kerana risau dipersoalkan agamanya. Namanya merupakan penyebabnya. Lawa bah namamu itu Nurul. Nurul merupakan gadis manis yg mempunyai wajah cantik dan fresh, sudah mempunyai pengikutnya tersendiri.mbpfc doakan agar Nurul berjaya nanti ya! Mari kita cubuk-cubuk dulu gambar dia ni. All the best mandak! Kredit foto buat pemiliknya🙏💕 #mbpfc #info #undukngadau @olunduslady @sabahqueen_

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Not only that, Sabah’s Islamic Administration Enactment and a fatwa issued by the state’s fatwa committee forbids Muslim women to take part in beauty pageant. Hence, in order for Nurul to take part in Kota Marudu Unduk Ngadau beauty pageant, she had to show her baptism certification as proof.

Criticised for being mistaken as a muslim 

However, Nurul isn’t the first girl who’ve faced difficulties in the pageant world. Miss Malaysia World 2014, Dewi Liana Seriestha, had her share of criticisms as she was thought to be Muslim.

Four Muslim girls disqualified in Miss Malaysia World 2013

While back in 2013, four Muslim finalists for the Miss Malaysia World beauty pageant, Sara Amelia Bernard, Wafa Johanna De Korte, Miera Sheikh and Kathrina Ridzuan got disqualified from the competition after receiving  Federal Territory mufti (Islamic scholar) Wan Zahidi Wan Teh that their participation was “sinful”.

Source: The Star

This was all based on a fatwa that was gazetted on Feb 8th, 1996 under the Administration of Islamic Law (Federal Territories) 1993. It states that participating, organising or contributing to any beauty contest is ‘haram’ (forbidden) and a sin for Muslims.

But why are we still following an old ruling?  

Internationally, there are Muslim women who’ve won beauty pageants. Rima Fakih became the first Muslim woman to be crowned as Miss United States 2010 while Hammasa Kohistani won Miss England 2005.

On top of that, Malaysian-born, Nurul Zuriantie Shamsul made it to top 5 of Miss Universe New Zealand 2018. She even wore a hijab in the competition!

But in Malaysia, one of the criteria for you to join beauty pageants is to be non-Muslim. What about Muslim-Malaysian girls who have what it takes to glorify Malaysia’s name internationally? They will never get a chance to prove themselves because of this outdated ruling.
What do you think about this? Should Malaysia allow Muslims to to join beauty pageants? Let us know what you think!