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The faithful hail use of hijab at UCH, law school

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Ishaq Akintola


Another victorious verdict has come the way of female Muslim students in Nigeria as the University College Hospital, Ibadan approved the use of hijab for Muslim female students. This is coming few hours after Firdausa Al-Jannah Amasa, the law graduate who challenged the restriction on the use of hijab last year was called to bar at a ceremonious event in Abuja on Tuesday.

The recent developments have attracted commendations and jubilation from Islamic organisations.Director, Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), Professor Ishaq Akintola, said the Nigerian Law School has succeeded in restoring the confidence of Nigerian Muslims in legal education by giving recognition to the identity of the Muslim person.

Akintola appealed to the authorities to allow other female Muslim students who wish to wear hijab below their wigs in future call to bar ceremonies.He argued that Muslims couldn’t be fully integrated into all aspects of Nigerian life unless authorities make inclusiveness a cardinal principle in their policies, rules and regulations.

He further commended the House of Representatives for its quick intervention in the Law School hijab saga, including all Islamic organisations, which showed interest in the struggle to liberate the Nigerian Muslim woman from the shackles of neo-colonialism as epitomized by the Amasa Firdaus phenomenon.

“We urge female Muslim law students who are already accustomed to using hijab to continuing wearing it without nursing any fear of persecution. Hijab is an Allah-given fundamental human right of every Muslim woman. Our hijab is our right and our right is our right. We assure Nigerian Muslim women of unflinching solidarity and full support of Nigerian Muslims.

“Nonetheless, we appeal to Muslims throughout the country to be humble in victory, to seek no vengeance, to avoid issuing provocative statements and to pray for a brilliant and successful law career for Amasa Firdaus”. He said.

President of Muslims Students’ Society of Nigeria, (MSSN) Lagos branch, Dr. Saheed Ashafa, who hailed the action said Amasa ‘s call to bar, would encourage Muslim females to be dedicated to their academics.He said: “This is a welcome development. We hope that as time goes on, we will get something better. The use of hijab is not only constitutional but also mandatory for all Muslim females.

“The law school has shown enough maturity in this matter by calling Amasa to bar with her hijab. Not allowing her would have been a breach of her right, an injustice and would send a bad signal that the justice house is ill. It will also be counterproductive to the agenda of the Federal Government to encourage girl-child education. The victory of Amasa would encourage other females to pursue any course of their choice without fear of being victimized,” he said.

He urged other institutions to follow the step. According to him hijab is not a harmful outfit. “It is mandatory for every female Muslim. Denying it means the denial of the Muslim females of their fundamental human right, which is against the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended),” he explained, adding that Amasa deserved to be celebrated.

The National Amir of MSSN, Muhammad Jameel Muhammad said, It is persistence and doggedness on the fight for Muslims constitutionally given right that has paid off. He urged Muslims to be persistent and consistent in demanding their right within the ambit of law.“We are grateful to Allah for the height attained. We are also grateful for the supports received from well- meaning Nigerians who stood for justice,” he said.


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Ishaq AkintolaMURIC
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