The 34-year-old recently went on Instagram live, where she promoted her businesses and mocked Rizieq’s return to Indonesia, which marked the end of his self-imposed exile of more than three years in Saudi Arabia. Nikita said that Rizieq’s welcoming event, which saw thousands of his supporters crowding Soekarno-Hatta International Airport on Tuesday, was excessive.
Related — Islamic group apologizes after Rizieq Shihab’s homecoming crowd damaged airport property
“Because of Habib Rizieq’s return to Jakarta, the welcoming [event] was insane, traffic jams everywhere,” Nikita said, adding that her close friend was late for her flight because of the crowd.
“What I know is that habib means tukang obat (medicine man). [Take a] screenshot [of me saying this]. Habib [Rizieq] is a charlatan, don’t glorify him. Prophet Muhammad, He’s clearly a prophet. While this human always makes trouble but he gets a [warm] welcome,” she said, possibly mistaking the Indonesian word habib (an honorific title in Islam) with tabib (medicine man).
The actress-turned-entrepreneur also said she didn’t fear retaliation by Rizieq’s supporters, as they’re known to be fierce when it comes to defending the firebrand cleric.
In response, Maaher At-Thuwailibi, a cleric and colleague of Rizieq, called out Nikita in a video and threatened to bring along hundreds of “Islamic defenders” to raid her home. He even went as far as calling her a lonte, which means slut.
“I warn you in 24 hours if you don’t make a clarification and a public apology, I, Maaher At-Thuwailibi along with an army of 800 Islamic defenders, will besiege your house. I am serious, I’m not playing around, let’s see what happens. Our blood will be poured to defend the honor of the Prophet’s grandson,” Maaher said in the video, making a reference to unsubstantiated claims that Rizieq is a direct descendant of the Prophet Muhammad.
Police officers have been guarding Nikita’s home in South Jakarta as a precaution against the threat.
“Since last night, we have employed our officers to conduct patrols, around 10 to 15 people. Because [Nikita’s home] is within my sub-precinct’s territory, therefore we will provide security,” Pesanggrahan sub-precinct chief Rosiana Nurwidajati said today.
Rosiana said she may deploy more officers to guard Nikita’s house today.
Meanwhile, Nikita has been mocking Maaher following his threat.
“I’m a lone woman, but they want to besiege me. Am I that strong? I’ll be too tired to file a police report tomorrow. Why should they threaten me on social media, they could just report me to the police easily. […] But no worries, I still have digital traces [of Maaher and the supporters]. Me being called a lonte by a cleric trended on Twitter. How could an ustadz use such [lewd] language,” Nikita wrote on Instagram.
Subscribe to The Coconuts Podcast for top trending news and pop culture from Southeast Asia and Hong Kong.
Send your news and stories to us email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org and WhatsApp: +447747873668.
Before you go...
Democratic norms are being stress-tested all over the world, and the past few years have thrown up all kinds of questions we didn't know needed clarifying – how long is too long for a parliamentary prorogation? How far should politicians be allowed to intervene in court cases? To monitor these issues as closely as we have in the past we need your support, so please consider donating to The Climax News Room.