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MURIC charges FUNAAB students to protest discrimination against Hijab, Niqab



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The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has charged students of the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta to resist the ban on Hijab and Niqab promulgated by the authorities of the institution.

This came in the wake of the harassment of a student by a security man who insisted she must remove her face-covering veil before she could enter the university. Subsequently, the university confirmed that the niqab was banned at FUNAAB.

In response to this, the MURIC Director Professor Ishaq Akintola on Monday noted that the niqab ban violates the freedom of religion guaranteed by the constitution.

“Every person shall be entitled to freedom of religion to manifest and propagate his religion or belief,” he stated.

He also called on Muslim students to take action against the niqab ban, saying, “FUNAAB has crossed the red line. This oppression must stop and Muslim students have to take their destiny into their hands or the humiliation will continue ad infinitum. From now on, any institution in the South West that messes up with Allah-given fundamental human rights of Muslim students will face the wrath of the students.

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“No institution of learning, from primary to tertiary, whether federal, state, or even private, has the right to prohibit the use of hijab or niqab. It is a contravention of the provisions of Section 38(i) & (ii) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

“To that extent, therefore, all anti-niqab pronouncements, memos, circulars, posters, etc issued by FUNAAB are null, void, and of no legal effect whatsoever. The same goes for all such declarations and actions in other academic institutions throughout Yorubaland.”

He provided a possible compromise to address the security concerns: “if the authorities are not just keen on profiling Muslims, all they need to do is to ensure that Muslim women wearing niqab or hijab are checked by female security personnel. Their identities can also be verified by female officials who will take them to one side and take a look at their faces and cross-check on their identity cards.”

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