We’ll partner govt on tightening security in Oyo — Muslim community

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Says, ‘We are seeking legal framework for free use of hijab’

THE Muslim Community of Oyo State (MUSCOYS) has announced its plan to go into partnership with the state government on the enhancement of security of lives and property through the establishment of a security network.

This was contained in a communique after a one-day ‘Unity Summit’ held at the weekend at the University of Ibadan Muslim Community Conference Centre.

According to the communique, signed by the chairman and secretary,  Alhaji Kunle Sanni and Alhaji Murzik Siyanbade, said the proposed security network would collaborate with the government and security agencies on intelligence gathering, community policing, among other areas.

At the summit, Alhaji Sanni stated that the community was poised to pursue the provision of constitutional framework for the use of hijab by willing female students in public schools.

He said the idea of blocking Muslim students from using hijab in some government schools would no longer be tolerated as the community had concluded plans to take a legal action on the situation.

“What Section 32:2 of the constitution says is that a Muslim is entitled not only to freedom of religion but freedom to manifest his religion. The use of the hijab is a manifestation of Islam,” Sanni emphasised.

According to the MUSCOYS, there is no state in the country where the Muslims have lost a court case on the use of hijab because the constitution is clear about it.

“When my friend, Christopher Alao-Akala, was the governor [of Oyo State], some Muslim teachers started to use niqab (a garment that covers the face, worn by Muslim women) in Kishi and they were dismissed. They went to court. The Christian judge that presided over the matter not only adjudicated that the teachers were within their religious right to put on their niqab but she also said that their three years’ backlog of salaries should be paid.

“We will, insha Allah, go back to court because we want hijab for all women in Oyo State,” he said.

Speaking at the event, the chief host, the Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Alhaji Dawud Akinola, underlined the imperativeness of love and unity among Muslims.

He explained that it had become necessary for the Muslims to look inwards for solutions to the myriad of challenges facing the Ummah in Oyo State and beyond.

The chairman of the Ibadan Muslim Community, Chief Mustafa Bayo Oyero, in a goodwill message, said unity was critical to development which he said Muslims needed urgently at the moment.

The summit drew top Muslim personalities and representatives of faith-based organisations from different parts of the state who deliberated on the unity of the ummah in the state.

Chief Oyero said: “What the chairman, Alhaji Kunle Sanni, said was the experience of over 40 years which has not changed. Muslims in power only used Islam to nurture their political ambition and empower their own selves.”

He added that it was high time the community took all necessary actions to advance the cause of the ummah.

In a lecture, the Chief Imam of Bashorun Housing Estate Central Mosque, Sheikh Habeebullah Buhari, implored Muslims to hold fast to Allah’s commandments and shun things that are capable of igniting conflicts among them.

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