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Muslim Community Drags Osun Govt to Court Over Use of Hijab

The Muslim Community in Osun State have dragged Osun State Government to court seeking an order to allow all Muslim female students in public primary and secondary schools to wear head covering (hijab) as part of their uniform.

The community under the aiges of Incorporated Trustees of Osun State
Muslim Community and Students Society of Nigeria had approached the
court seeking the order to allow all female students wear hijab in
accordance to the Islamic rights and injunctions.

Joined in the suit filed are the state Attorney-General and
Commissioner for Justice, Barrister Wale Afolabi, and Commissioner for
Education who is also the state Deputy Governor, Mrs. Grace Titilayo
Laoye-Tomori, the state ANCOPPS and others.

The representative of the applicant, Sheik Salaudeen Olayiwola and
Alhaji Sadiq Bola Bello in the motion filed said that they were
claiming their fundamental human rights as Muslims.

When the case came up for mentioning on Thursday, the counsel to the
applicant, Barrister Kazeem Odedeji told the court that the Christians
Association of Nigeria (CAN) has also filed application to be joined in the case.

He however urged the court not to grant their (CAN’s) prayers insisting that the use of hijab is in accordance with the tenets of Islam.

But counsel to Christians Association of Nigeria (CAN), Mr. Femi
Ayandokun objected to the application of Muslims Community praying the court against granting the application. He urged the court to give
both applicants and respondents fresh date to harmonise the motions
before the court.

The state Attorney-General and Commisisoner for Justice, Barrister
Wale Afolabi, the lead counsel to the respondents said that he has no
objection to the applicant’s position seeking for more time for
harmonization of motions before the court.

In his ruling, the Presiding Judge, Justice Oyejide Falola ordered the
two parties to maintain law and order in the state admonishing that no
one should promote religious disharmony in the state.

According to him, “let us live in peace, we are one, now that court
has taken over the matter, the court will do what is right over the matter
in order to maintain peace and order in the state”.

He however adjourned the case till 13th May 2013 for definite hearing.

-TIMOTHY AGBOR/ OSOGBO

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