The Kelantan government has denied knowledge of Sultan of Kelantan Sultan Muhammad V’s divorce from former Russian beauty pageant contestant Rihana Oksana Voevodina. -- NSTP Archive

KOTA BARU: The Kelantan government has denied knowledge of Sultan of Kelantan Sultan Muhammad V’s divorce from former Russian beauty pageant contestant Rihana Oksana Voevodina.

Deputy Menteri Besar Datuk Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah said the state government could only comment on the issue if there was an official statement from the Kelantan palace.

He urged certain quarters including the media to refer the matter with the palace.

“(Just) like when members of the Press asked us (the state government) on the Sultan's marriage, we cannot comment (on the divorce news) because we have no official information about that.

“We only know about the divorce through social media, including from the news published on the front page of a newspaper today,” he told reporters after attending a state executive councillor meeting at the Darulnaim Complex, here, today.

Mohd Amar said while marital issues were common, the people should accord a degree of privacy when it involved a ruler.

“Therefore, I would like to suggest those who are interested in the issue, to seek information from the palace or the Kelantan Royal Household Comptroller directly.”

On the recent move by Kelantan Palace to issue a statement to rebuke the practice of referring to certain individuals as “Permaisuri of Kelantan" (Queen of Kelantan) without official conferment from the palace, Mohd Amar said the state government had yet to receive instructions to take legal action against individuals found breaching the law.

“If there is an offence committed by a certain person, the palace can either take its own legal action or instruct us (the state government) to do so. But at the moment, there has been no instruction from the palace.”

Mohd Amar was commenting on NST’s front-page today on the divorce which took place after a marriage of just over a year.

They were said to have married on June 7 last year and filed their divorce at the Singapore Syariah Court in June.