Hijab Bill: MURIC Lambasts CAN, Tells Reps What To Do

humanitarian intervention.

The ongoing drama between the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has unveiled another episode as the former has asked the House of Representatives to ignore the former’s stance on the proposed hijab bill.

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) had yesterday reportedly moved against the hijab bill which has scaled through the second reading in the House of Representatives.

The bill is titled ‘Religious Discrimination (Prohibition, Prevention) Bill 2021’. CAN’s opposition to the bill came through a statement issued yesterday by its secretary, Joseph Daramola, who argued that legislating the wearing of hijab in schools would lead to the trouble that the sponsors of the bill may not be able to handle.

Reacting to the development, MURIC in a statement by its director, Ishaq Akintola, described CAN’s opposition to the freedom bill as conservative and reactionary.

MURIC urged lawmakers to go ahead with the bill “as it is not designed for hijab rights alone,” arguing that the bill also aims at liberating Nigerian workers and women from discrimination.

According to MURIC, “CAN is not talking about morality, legality and justice in its opposition to the bill. CAN is not interested in whether it is right or wrong. The only thing CAN is interested in is to impose its own whims and caprices on the lawmakers by threatening fire and brimstone. Imagine CAN’s words, ‘We are not against the wearing of hijab in public and Islamic schools but our schools should not be included unless those states are looking for trouble’.

“CAN refers to missionnary schools which were taken over by the Gowon decree of 1974 as ‘our schools’. That is a misnomer. Those schools ceased to be missionary schools a long time ago. CAN will therefore be living in self-denial if it continues to refer to them as ‘our schools’. These are schools being fully funded by the government. Teachers’ appointments, promotion, salaries, entitlements, etc are in the hands of government. Is their any doubt about who owns the schools? It should be noted that both the Christians and Muslims were fully compensated when government took over their schools.

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