Malaysian actress Emma Maembong sparked online furore after an intimate photo taken with her rumoured boyfriend went viral. What irked netizens was the fact that she didn’t have her hijab on. The 26-year-old is said to be dating Syed Abdullah, the older brother of Malaysia’s youth and sports minister Syed Saddiq.

One of the viral photos seemed to have been taken at a restaurant, while the other is of a woman sitting between Syed Abdullah’s legs in a room. Emma denied that she was the woman in the latter photo, but apologised for not wearing her hijab in the former.


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Many also criticised her for not practising the boundaries that separate men and women in Islam—women are not allowed to have physical contact with men who are not their mahram (to put it loosely, family members) or husband. The criticism came after she was seen putting her arms around Syed Abdullah in one of the photos.

Yesterday, she apologised in an Instagram post.

The Malaysian-Scottish actress wrote: “I want to apologise for my negligence. It’s my fault. It’s not my friend’s fault, nor my family’s, or anyone else’s because it was me who was negligent. Please forgive me. Thank you for those who have given me their advice, and to those who were angry or disappointed or sad, I apologise. Even though many said to seek forgiveness from Allah instead, I feel like I should also apologise to humans too, right? I haven’t had the time to reply all the comments because there are too many, but thank you for those who are still supporting me and those who are positive [about the situation]. Love you guys so much. I’m sorry again. Please forgive me.”

She also replied comments to apologise for her behaviour, while vehemently denying that she was the woman in the photo taken in the room. Syed Abdullah concurred, telling Malaysian news outlets that the woman in the photo was not Emma and that the photo was taken four years ago.

Some fans showed support, telling her that humans make mistakes and that it’s important that she acknowledged her wrongdoing. Others were not as supportive. One user also pointed out that she hasn’t been acting lately possibly because she’s been embroiled in gossips.


IG user: Keep strong, sis. Which human doesn’t make mistakes, right? The important thing is that you remain humble and “steady”. I hope you’ll be blessed with prosperity.


IG user: It’s OK. The important thing is that you have acknowledged your mistake. I will continue supporting you, sis.


IG user: Only she would admit it. If it happened to other (derogatory term), they wouldn’t admit it. But why? Why you do that? You’re OTT. I noticed that Emma hasn’t been acting lately. Is it because there are too many gossips surrounding you? Don’t add more to it!


IG user: Seek forgiveness from God, not humans like us. You committed a sin against God. Your faith is shaken to the point where you would show your aurat (the parts of body that must be covered).

Emma started acting in 2012. After making a name for herself in showbiz, she started a few businesses, including one in which she sells hijabs.

Syed Abdullah also posted an apology on his Instagram.

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“Apology is not about saying I’m sorry, but its about the meaning you put behind the apology and admitting that you are the wrong part” Today, has been a tough day for me & my family. The challenges i face today, is but a fraction of accusations i have continuously faced and probably will continue facing being in the position i am in. To those who truly know me, thank you for standing by my side, sending me constant messages and reminding me to be strong. To my fellow Malaysians, I thank you for your advice, I thank you for your moral support. I shall acknowledge your criticism positively and promise to improve myself as a person. I am not perfect, i am but a human and i tend to make mistakes. “Syed mintak maaf ya Rakan-Rakan. Biarlah kesalahan syed dijadikan teladan bagi anak muda, supaya mengelakkan perkara seperti berikut berlaku pada diri masing-masing” I am so Sorry. For the mess i have caused & to those who have been affected. Ini semua salah Syed & kecuaian Syed seorang. Jangan lah hubung kait kesilapan Syed dengan keluarga Syed & rakan2 Syed. Let me face the wrath of my mistakes. Let me take the beating. Let me face the punishment. To those spreading rumors i say this: I am stronger & will learn from my mistakes, the bonding between my family my brothers,sister & true friends remain untouched and undamaged despite accusations. Yours truly, Syed Abdullah

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