Law School Hijab Controversy: Sultan Of Sokoto Makes Case For Muslims

Image: THISDAYLIVE Law School Hijab Controversy: Sultan Of Sokoto Makes Case For Muslims

Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA, Dr. Mohammad Sa’ad Abubakar has decried the recent controversy over Hijab which started after a Muslim lady wasn’t called to bar at the Nigerian Law School because she wore a Hijab to the ceremony.

According to him, Hijab simply means decent dressing for Muslim women and remains part and parcel of Islam.

The Sultan spoke in Lagos on Saturday, December 16, during the fifth National Convention of Muslim Public Affairs Centre, MPAC, with the theme, “Public Trust and Accountability”.

The Sultan who was represented at the event by the Wazirin of Katsina, Professor Sanni Abubakar Lugga, said he could not decipher why the issue of Hijab would be so controversial to the extent that female Muslims who adorn Hijab would be ‘molested’.

He spoke against the backdrop of the recent controversy over the denial of a University of Ilorin law student, Miss Amasa Firdaus from being called to bar last week for refusing to remove her Hijab worn under her wig.

The Sultan said Hijab is not only a mode of dressing in Islam only but it is also an accepted mode of dressing in Christianity and Judaism.

He stressed that Muslims are peace-loving and they should be allowed to practise their religion as stipulated by Allah and as contained in the traditions of Prophet Mohammad. Professor Abubakar said: “His eminence wonders while Hijab has now become a controversial issue.

Hijab simply means decent dressing, decent dressing by the females. So why should decent dressing be a problem? The Hijab is just an Arabic word. In English it means decent dressing.

“His Eminence has asked Nigerians to reflect and see that this is not only an Islamic mode of dressing but a Christian mode of dressing. It is also a Judaism mode of dressing and it is a dressing for every decent woman. It is a dressing for any woman who wants to preserve her chastity in public.

“Secondly, in Nigerian constitution it is absolutely clear. Why should Nigerian Muslims be molested and even denied their own right? The Appeal Court ruling in Ilorin is there, the Appeal Court in Lagos and also the High Court all delivered judgement in favour of Hijab.

“Justice Alooma, the former CJN, Justice Bukalchuwa and other Senior Justices in Nigeria wear their Hijab and then the wig on top of it. The Nigeria Judicial Council (NJC), the highest body in the judiciary has not said, ‘no, they should stop’ which means the Nigerian constitution allows the Hijab, the Nigerian Courts through these three judgements have allowed the Hijab and the NJC through these senior judges has allowed the Hijab.

“Why will a legal school refuse our sister’s induction into the judiciary simply because she is wearing Hijab? Is the law school saying they are above the NJC, they are above the Nigerian constitution, they are above these three senior courts?” Meanwhile, the lady at the center of the controversy, Miss Firdaus has said she was aware of the outcome of her action, adding that she remained resolute in her conviction to speak for the recognition of rights of female Muslim law graduates.

She added that the law school has not said anything on the case, even as she acknowledged the support she has been getting from the Muslim community. “There is nothing like laws preventing the use of hijab. When you ask them too, they tell you it is convention; that that is how it is done and it has to remain like that,” she said.

Author: Yemi Olarinre