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MURIC chides universities for allegedly persecuting Muslim students

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Prof. Ishaq Akintola

The Rights Concern (MURIC) has expressed displeasure about the frequent persecution of Muslim students on campus by the management of the private universities.

Director, Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), Professor Ishaq Akintola, in a statement said despite the humongous amount being charged as school fees and other miscellaneous charges in those private tertiary institutions, Muslim students are allegedly being marked for stigmatization, contemptuous treatment and forceful conversion.

He said: “MURIC strongly condemns these neo-colonialist propensities. Tyranny is least expected in cassock. It is quite demeaning, totally unbecoming and outrightly preposterous. Conscienceless power is subjugating powerless conscience.

“This ugly development is a dangerous dimension at this stage of Nigeria’s history. By subjecting Muslim students to such mental and spiritual torture, Christian private universities in Nigeria are reminding us of the sad experience encountered by Nigerian Muslims at the advent of colonialism when Western education was used as a weapon to forcefully convert Muslims to Christianity. It is neo-colonialism per se.

“Muslim students in various Christian private universities have reported how they are forced to attend church on Sunday. They are compelled to go to the chapel for various Christian-oriented programmes. A leading Christian private university rusticated a Muslim student who happened to be the president of the students’ union on a flimsy excuse.

“Female Muslim students who have been using hijab before they were admitted are disallowed from using it the moment they pay their school fees and conclude other registration formalities whereas such rules are not rolled out earlier,” he said.

Akintola said the failure to stipulate the anti-Muslim rules before admitting candidates amounts to deliberate entrapment of Muslim youths, deception and gross failure to fulfill a social contract.

“It is morally deficient. private universities are being used by Christian organizations to seize by the bends what they could not get by the straights. The Nigerian public is being taken for a wild ride and, for Muslim parents and their children and wards, it is like taking a ‘one-chance’ bus,”

MURIC therefore charges the National Universities Commission (NUC) to investigate this serious allegation made against private universities in Nigeria. NUC cannot afford to stand akimbo while thousands of Muslim students are spiritually raped. Were those universities licenced to forcefully convert Muslim students to Christianity?

“NUC must protect those innocent students more so since denial of religious right under any guise is a breach of Section 38 (i) & (ii) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. NUC has a duty to call universities to order when they roll out Draconian rules. MURIC is in possession of documents and data spelling out the atrocities committed by the accused universities and we are ready to supply them if NUC has the political will to perform its duty.

“We also invite the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to take a critical look at these allegations which boarder on infringement on fundamental human rights. MURIC will soon forward incriminating documents in its possession to the commission,” he said.



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