Kwara State Government has approved the use of hijab uniforms for Muslim schoolgirls in all public schools.
Secretary to the government Mamma Sabah Jibril said Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq gave the approval after meetings with leaders of both Muslim and Christian communities with a view to clarifying issues and reaching a consensus.
“Consequently, the government hereby acknowledges and approves the right of the Muslim schoolgirl to wear the hijab, and directs the Ministry of Education and Human Capital Development to come up with a uniform hijab for all public/ grant-aided schools, which will be the accepted mode of head covering in schools,” Jibril said in a statement.
“Also, the government affirms the right of every child in public schools to freedom of worship.”
“Any willing schoolgirl with the approved (uniform) hijab shall have the right to wear same in public/grant-aided schools,” Jibril said in a statement.
Jibril disclosed that the governor’s approval considered submissions of all major interest groups on the matter, education law in Kwara State, prevailing court judgments, and current global trends of multiculturalism in evolving a consultation-based decision that will bring lasting peace and understanding to our communities.
Prior to the approval, the government had shut down 10 schools over the controversy around wearing of hijab by Muslim schoolgirls “to maintain peace and public order as well as prevent mischief-makers from taking undue advantage of the development.”
Jibril said the government “also paid particular attention to the ‘declaratory’ nature of the subsisting judgments of the Court of Appeal and their purports.
“Any willing schoolgirl with the approved (uniform) hijab shall have the right to wear same in public/grant-aided schools,” Jibril said.
The government thereafter directed that the 10 schools that were shut should reopen to commence classes on Monday, March 8, 2021.
Jibril stated that there is no victor or vanquished on the hijaab question and urged the two faith communities, their leaders, thought leaders and media personalities “to act with restraint and great responsibility in their public utterances and actions, and continue to live in peace and harmony with one another.”