Sunday 25th July 2021

Osun hijab crisis: S-West Islamic body advises CAN, Muslim leaders

Following the crisis that trailed the wearing of Hijab by female Muslim students in Osun State, the Muslim Ummah of South West Nigeria, MUSWEN, has advised on the Osun State Chapter, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), to respect the court ruling or seek legal redress if not satisfied with the judgement.
 
Addressing newsmen, executive secretary of MUSWEN, Professor Dawud O. S. Noibi maintained that the court ruling does not compel all Muslim students to wear hijab adding that “resort to self help will ultimately help nobody.”
 
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Noibi said: “Our Advice to CAN in Osun State in view of the foregoing, is to deeply consider the advice which one of the most respected Christian leaders in Nigeria, John Cardinal Onaiyekan, the Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, offered at a recent round-table on Law and Religion.
 
‘’His Grace said the nation should adopt the policy that no law should prohibit what religion prescribes or require citizens to do what religion prohibits.
 
‘’The Osun State chapter of CAN should learn a lesson from this advice. Besides, on purely moral grounds, one may ask: how does a Muslim girl’s wearing of hijab offend a Christian? Moreover, the court ruling does not compel all Muslim students to wear hijab. It is left entirely to the choice of the individual student who wishes to obey the order coming from her Creator.”
 
The MUSWEN  scribe further urged the leadership of CAN in Osun State to seek legal redress if not satisfied with judgment. He said; “The CAN leadership must be told that what they are doing in this case is challenging the directive of Allah.
 
Do they really feel comfortable preventing people from doing the Will of God on earth as it is done in heaven? If, however, CAN still feels strongly about the judgement, let them follow the commendable example of the Muslims of Lagos State by following the path of law.”

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Osun Divisional Conference Of Obas Salutes Aregbesola On Efforts To Tackle Economic Challenges

Osun Divisional Conference of Obas has lauded Governor Rauf Aregbesola for his frantic efforts towards overcoming the economic challenges facing the nation vis-à-vis the State of Osun.
 
june 12
 
 
In a communiqué issued at the end of its first quarterly meeting held at the Aragberi of Iragberi’s Palace, the conference admonished the entire people of the state to exercise patience and perseverance in this trying times, expressing the hope that all will soon be well.
The communiqué which was jointly signed by the Orangun of Ila, Oba Wahab Oyedotun and the Aragbiji of Iragbiji, Oba Adul-Rasheed Ayotunde Olabomi who are the Chairman and Secretary of Osun Divisional Conference of Obas respectively called on all able-bodied residents of the state to take advantage of the raining season by embarking on
farming to ensure mass food production.
The conference warned those who are in the habit of adorning themselves with beaded crowns, walking sticks and other paraphernalia of traditional rulers to desist from such acts, challenging the law enforcement agencies to enforce compliance with extant laws on this.
In their bid to ensure adequate security of lives and property, the royal fathers admonished the entire people of the state to be constantly vigilant and report all suspicious movements in their areas to law enforcement agencies and their respective traditional rulers.

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No Order To Provide debt Information granted by Osun CJ- Osun Govt

…..charges Journalists to always cross check facts before rushing to press.
The Government of Osun has described the report in some newspapers that the Chief Judge of Osun, ‎Justice Oyebola Adepele Ojo has granted an Order compelling the state Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola to provide information about the debt profile of the State‎ as totally false.
 
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Osun Government in a statement signed by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Moshood Adeoti charged journalists to always cross-check facts before going to the press.
Adeoti held that the fact that newspapers could go to press with such falsehood leaves much to be desired, saying it depicts the abysmal level into which journalism has sunk.
He pointed out that the order of Court granted the applicant at the last week Wednesday was the right to put the other party on notice which in this instance, the Governor of the State, and not an order granting the substantive reliefs of the Applicant.
The SSG stressed that a little due diligence by journalists would have revealed to them that the process leading to the report was made “ex-parte”, which means that the other party needs not be put on notice before such application for leave is heard by the court.

He added that a simple inquiry on the proceeding from the Clerk of the Court would have made this fact known to the reporters instead of rushing to the press without adequate understanding.
Statement noted, “The captioned news item in several newspapers including The Vanguard, Nigerian Tribune, The Guardian and The Nation of Thursday, 16 June, 2016 wherein it was reported that the Chief Judge granted an Order of Mandamus compelling the State Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, to provide information about the debt profile of Osun State and its defrayment modality among other orders is patently false.
“It is both sad and disheartening a journalist would go to press with a story without cross-checking the facts. The report referred to above is total falsehood. The applicant in the case is a well-known member of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from Ikeji Arakeji, who served in the last PDP administration in the state.
“The Order of Court granted him is the right to put the other party on notice, in this instance, the Governor of the State of Osun. It is not an order granting the substantive reliefs of the Applicant.
“While we are not surprised by this type of unprofessional Journalism because so many self-styled journalists have taken over the entire media space, what we are particularly miffed about is that some reputable media outfits could publish a story of this nature without getting their facts right”.
Osun Government averred that the journalists in question are obviously acting in cahoots with some unscrupulous individuals to malign the person of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola and by extension the Government of the State of Osun.
It noted that like so many others who have tried to do so in the past, such persons will continue to fail in their dubious enterprise.
 
The statement added that the administration of Aregbesola is a respecter of the Judiciary and as such would not do anything to undermine the judicial process in any way or shy away from defending the acts of government at any point it is called upon to do so.
It called on the management of the relevant newspapers to call the journalists in question to order so that the news organisations would not be subjected to retracting stories at all times.

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CAN HIJAB BE A PART OF UNIFORM? – Adekunle Al Miftau Adeite

As the conversation on the actions of the Osun State Chapter of CAN continues, various perspectives and remarks are coming into play. Interestingly, Interestingly, ‘westerns-style’ education’ and ‘uniforms’ seems to be common parallels being used to justify positions. Therefore, the below is a review of the Hijab practices in those ‘Western Countries’.
 
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1. In America, Hijab wearing is protected under the constitutional right to freedom of religion. Any school that violates this right can come under federal lawsuit. Organizations like the Americans Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) make sure that religious rights in schools are respected as well as make sure that schools do not endorse any religions. It can be a fine line. In addition to protecting the rights of girls to wear hijab it also allows for other religious articles such as the Jewish yarmulke or jewelry with the Star of David. It also protects the rights of Christians to wear the cross. It also guarantees that reasonable accommodations be made for students religions. So Muslims wanting to make their 5 daily prayers must be allowed to pray in school. However, schools can make certain requirements about a student’s hijab. For example, schools that require uniforms can require that a hijab be a specific color. Nursing and Medical schools can require that a hijab be a specific color (usually white) and that it be tight fitting and must be tucked into a shirt so that there are no ends hanging which could transfer diseases from one patient to another.
2. In Quebec, Canada, Emilie Ouimet, a 13-year-old high school student, was sent home from school for wearing the Hijab. The primary reason given by the principal was that the school had a strict code that forbade the use of caps or attire that would distinguish students from their peers – part of a dress code for disciplinary reasons. Soon after, a debate raged for months through Quebec society.
The parents of Dania Bali, a straight-A student who was asked to remove her Hijab filed a complaint with the Quebec Human Rights Commission. The Commission made a landmark ruling that turned the tide: Quebec schools did not have the right to prohibit any student from wearing religious attire (be it a Sikh turban, a Jewish yarmulke, a Christian cross, or Islamic Hijab).
More importantly, Quebec society was asked to consider the issues of religious pluralism in the emerging “global village”. The Quebec Charter of Rights guaranteed religious freedom, and no school administrator or employer could take that right away.
3. The Metropolitan Police in London has accepted Hijab as a uniform option for Muslim women serving in the force. The announcement was made at a conference on the theme of “Protect and Respect: Everybody’s Benefit”. The move is seen as a further sign of official acceptance of Britain as a religiously diverse society where faith-related accommodations should be made for all individuals.
4. In Scotland, the Police introduced a hijab to its uniform in an effort to attract more Muslim women to a force which is failing to reflect the diversity in the country’s population.
5. In Minnesota, Kadra Mohamed, (in the attached photo) became Minnesota’s first hijab wearing police woman and the first Somali female officer. Kadra Mohamed is only 21 years old and already making history.
We can go on and on with examples from Western Countries you want to tell us our education is styled after. You have also seen that Hijab can also be a part of a uniform too.
Aregbesola may have other faults, are we going to fault him on the ruling of a competent court of law?
I asked a question which no one endeavored to answer: what does a person’s hijab stops you from doing? How does a piece of scarf constitute a distraction when half-naked dresses do not?
Maybe we should do away with uniforms to please all, after all students in Anne Arundel County schools in the state of Maryland, USA do not wear uniforms.

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I didn’t order use of hijab in schools – Aregbesola

The Governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola, has denied claims that he is behind the hijab crisis rocking the education sector in the state.
 
june 12
 
“Let me say this there is no official pronouncement on hijab. I have not ordered the use of hijab in schools and I challenge them to bring evidence,” Aregbesola said during a roundtable on developing collaborative framework for education organised by the Development and Advancement in Western Nigeria.
“It might interest you that my wife does not use hijab, my daughter does not use hijab. So, I did not order the use of hijab.
“My view on Islam is why I am suffering unmerited persecution. My crime is that I struggle to be a good Muslim and not because I hurt anybody.”
The governor insisted that there was no crisis in the state’s education sector and accused the media of celebrating idiocy by focusing on the decision of some “misguided students” of Baptist High School to wear church garments to school.
He said it was wrong for any religious body to claim the ownership of any public school in the state as government took over the schools about 41 years ago.
The governor also said it was not true that schools founded by Muslim were merged with schools established by Christian missionaries.

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He explained that the hijab crisis started in 2012 when four Muslim students were prevented from using hijab after they were transferred to Baptist High School from a school where they were allowed to use hijab.
Meanwhile, some Muslim clerics stormed some public schools in Osogbo on Monday, insisting that female Muslim students should be allowed to wear hijab to the schools in accordance with the judgment of the Osun State High Court.
It was gathered that the clerics went to St. Charles’ High School and Ife Oluwa Middle School early in the morning but the teachers told them it would take a directive from the Ministry of Education for that to happen.
“Some Muslims came this morning and said they wanted to enforce the use of hijab. We explained to them that we will allow our students to wear hijab whenever we get instruction from the state government to do so,” the Principal of St. Charles’ High School, Mr. Anthony Famoriyo, said.
“You know that everything we do in schools follows procedure; what you teach, the way you teach. We are not against any group. We are here to teach our children and that is our mission.”

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Osun hijab crisis: SSS, Police meet Church officials

Security agencies in Osun State held an emergency meeting Thursday to find ways of curtailing possible fallouts of an ongoing controversy over the use of hijab in public schools.
 
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The meeting was held at the office of the state Director of Security Services, Ike Madagwana, with the state police commissioner, Femi Olanipekun, representatives of the state government, Sunday Akere and Wale Afolabi, both former commissioners, in attendance.
Also present at the meeting were representatives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), representative of Baptist Church in the state, other paramilitary organizations in the state.
The state’s Christian Association of Nigeria is opposed to the use of hijab by female Muslim students in public secondary schools, especially those established by churches.
A recent court ruling authorised the uniform. In response, CAN directed Christian students to attend schools in church garments.
PREMIUM TIMES learnt that Thursday’s meeting, which lasted for several hours, generated hot exchanges between the security officials and representatives from the Baptist Church.
The arguments started when Baptist officials made it clear that it was inappropriate for the security agencies to invite them for the meeting, asserting that only CAN could summon them to such meetings to discuss the hijab issue.
Members of the Baptist team said they were not informed about such meeting, but were only invited by the Director of SSS, who had informed them that he wanted to see the church’s officials.

“We wondered how ‘We just want to see you in our office’ could now turn to be an unexpected meeting,” one of the clergymen, who would want to be named, said.
“We were even surprised that all the security outfits in the state had already gathered at the place waiting for our arrival.
“We declined to sit with them as we told them that only CAN officials could meet us. How can they say that they want to see us in their office and organize a meeting that we were not aware of with us.
“After a lot of persuasion by all security agencies that gathered there, we sat with them and when the issue of hijab was raised, we only told them that we were not for war but for peace anytime, any day, but our own right also should not be taken away from us.
“To our own knowledge, it is not a meeting but invitation to see the SSS in their office before we met all those assembled in preparation to have a meeting with us. If there will be a meeting let them communicate with CAN officials.”
After the session, state police commissioner, Mr. Olanipekun, told journalists that there was a peaceful meeting between the Christian body and the security agencies in the state to restore peace between Christians and Muslims.
He stated the Christian body was charged to live in harmony with Muslims in the state and was assured that same talks would be held with the Muslim body.
Source : Premium Times

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Don’t Think Of Yourself Alone; Aregbesola Tells Striking Doctors

                            …Commissions medical equipment
The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola on Wednesday described the action of the striking doctors in the state as selfish and uncaring about what happens to other citizens and residents of the state in the face of the present economic hardship faced by the country.
 
Commissioning of Medical Equipments 4
 
The Governor‎ stated this while delivering an address titled “To the improved health of the People” at the commissioning of new equipment for Boripe Local Government Health Centres  at Boripe Local Government Secretariat in Iragbiji.
Aregbesola admonished the striking doctors to recognise that the state is in a very special time of serious economic challenge and be willing to sacrifice like‎ every other workers in the state who are always at their duty post.
He held that government in spite of the great financial challenges has given the welfare of the people priority attention, saying it is high time that all realised that the state is in a special period where sacrifice must be made.
Aregbesola noted that states in the past used to get money from the federal government every month to run their administration, but since July 2013, that has continued to decrease until today when most states get nothing again.
‎According to the Governor, “There are however some of our health workers at the state level who think only of themselves, who do not care a hoot whatever happens to the rest of us.
“They have refused to recognise that we are in a special time and would insist that we give to them alone all the money in the state, even while other government workers are willing to make sacrifice.
“By their own action of indefinitely abandoning their duty post, they have demonstrated that they have no place in our hospitals and the reasonable thing to do is to fill the void they created. Nature abhors vacuum”. The Governor told the gathering.
‎He pointed out that the restoration of healthy living is one of his administration’s cardinal objectives, stating that it is only healthy people that  can work and be productive to generate revenues to government through tax.
Aregbesola also added that when people are healthy and live longer, they participate in political activities which translates into more votes for politicians, and that it is in the best interest of the people themselves and government to promote good health.
He said, “As you are also aware, the state government provides good healthcare services to the people through teaching hospital, which is the highest level, general hospitals and local government health centres.
“We have also been maintaining our free healthcare policy through constant procurement to ensure availability of free drugs at our hospitals, while there are also free anti-malaria drugs for expectant mothers as part of their ante-natal treatment in government-owned hospitals.
“Furthermore, we have renovated nine state hospitals, upgraded our existing primary healthcare centres while new ones are being built. We have also provided medical equipment, furniture and electrical appliances for some of our health facilities where these are needed.
“Ambulances equipped with first aid equipment were purchased and are now in full operation under the Osun Ambulance Services, which is aimed at improving the quick-response capacity of the health system, in cases of accidents and emergencies”. Aregbesola emphasised.
Speaking earlier, the Executive Secretary, Boripe Local Government, Alhaji Kehinde Moronkeji said the equipment being commissioned were donated by the AD King Foundation of Atlanta, Georgia, in the United States.
The Council boss added that when he took over the administration of the council, the health equipment at hospitals were outdated thus necessitating for modern medical equipment for health centres in the Local Government.
He said, “As we all know that, we are operating Primary Health Centres at the Local Government level while state are operating General hospitals. There are equipment acquire here that are meant for the use of tertiary hospital which will be donated to state to serve as our contribution to the development of the state.
“I want to quickly add that our administration would continue to be committed to programmes and project that would better the lots of our people”. He stressed.
The State Chairman of Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria, Alhaji Olajire Oyebode commended the Governor for what he has done in developing infrastructure in the state.
He noted that with all the road network in Osun that Aregbesola has constructed, there is no meaningful residents and citizens of the state that will not want to pay tax, pledging the commitment of members of his association to the payment of tax.
Oyebode said, “at this point of economic hardship, all in the state should be ready to pay their taxes, government needs money for it to continue the good work it has started, we are all living witness to how the armoured tanks provided for the police by the Governor was able to foil the robbery in Ikirun”. The Union leader stressed.

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Osun Cultivates 1,500 Hectare Of Land For Cocoa

The Osun State Investment Company Limited (OSICOL) has cultivated 1,500 hectares of land for cocoa to boost the state’s internal generated revenue (IGR).
Addressing reporters in Osogbo, the state capital, OSICOL’s Managing Director Bola Oyebamiji said 623 hectares of cocoa had been planted at Ibokun and another 523 hectares at Iwo.
 
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Oyebamiji identified the large scale cultivation of cocoa and palm tree as a long-term panacea to the state’s dwindling economic fortune.
According to him, the state has what it takes to revive its economy, if cocoa and oil palm cultivation is embraced.
Oyebamiji, who urrged Southwest residents to embrace cocoa and oil palm cultivation, noted that apart from the comparative advantage it has over other crops, mix cropping with it would also help to sustain the farmers.

The COSIL chief stressed that until Nigerians were able to produce the substantial part of what they consume, the economy would continue to dwindle.

He blamed the present economic downturn on overdependence on oil.

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Methodist Church to partner with Osun on agriculture

The leadership of Methodist Church Nigeria has openly declared it readiness to support government at all levels in Nigeria especially the State Government of Osun on massive agricultural production in order to salvage the current economic crisis.
The declaration was made by the Prelate, Methodist Church Nigeria, Dr. Samuel Emeka Uche, while paying a visit to Governor Aregbesola in his office, at Government Secretariat, Abere, Osogbo.
 
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The cleric who lamented over the current economic situation in the country said the nation has driven to a stage where government at all levels must tighten their belts in strengthen the economy of the country for the general well being of her citizenry.
The religious leader who attributed the   dwindling revenues to the coffers of the federal, state and local governments, to what he described as negligence of agriculture by the successive government in the country, stressing that if the nation has diligently and prudently explored her potentials in agriculture, the country would have grown beyond her current stage.
Dr. Uche explained further that, the only sustainable alternative to the current economic challenges was for the government and people of Nigeria to develop the required passions at resuscitating and revamping the lost glory of agriculture, which according to him has been ignorantly neglected by the past administrations in the country.
The Methodist Prelate who commended Governor Aregbesola for building an unsurpassable future for the state on all sectors of the economy especially agriculture, saying Governor Aregbesola has successfully proven his weights as a responsive and responsible Governor whose passion for development can never be measured or estimated.
Dr. Uche who described the allocation of Osun as the least among its peers, commended Governor Aregbesola for aggressively promoting the state within the template of meagre resources.
According to him, Osun has been prudently managing the affairs of the state despite the fact that the state by all standards receives the least allocation from the Federation Accounts.
He stated further that the giant strides of the current administration at building a self-sufficient and economic-independent state had been a driven force for economic realities being pursued by the current government.
Dr. Uche who assured total obedience and compliance towards the civic responsibilities of the citizenry in the country said, the time has come for all Nigerians to demonstrate high sense of commitment and seriousness towards taxation.
The spiritual father who described Nigeria as the only country where citizens display sense of adamancy towards taxation, saying if Nigeria must truly develop, her citizens must support the government with prompt tax payment.
“The purpose of our visit is to establish our staunch support and collaboration for Nigerian government in a bid to strengthen the nation’s economy and serve as helping hands in repositioning the country for all round development.
“We have identified agriculture as the only sustainable means of continuous existence of Nigeria. Our focus is to partner with government at all levels in the area of agriculture to enhance its production capacity and boost the revenues accruable to Nigeria and states of the federation.
“Methodist Church of Nigeria is not only committed to spiritual work but to be part of the process that will strengthen the economy of Nigeria and increase its revenue basis.
“In view of this, we have resolved as a religious institution to engage our members especially the youths on farming as we strongly believe that with the support of government, we shall succeed.
“We are appealing to your excellency to give us the needed supports most importantly enough lands for cultivation and plantation.
“The only way to rescue the country out of the present economic situation is to show our support and collaborate with government on agriculture”, Dr. Uche stated.
In his remarks, Governor Rauf Aregbesola who expressed delight over the economic foresight of the leadership of Methodist Church said their resolution to support the government efforts on agriculture and taxation was a testimony to present economic reality.
Governor Aregbesola also commended the leadership of the Methodist church for identifying with the state on its present economic challenges, promising to render whatever support requires to aid members of the church actualizing its dreams.
The Governor who lamented over the continuous reduction in the global prices of crude oil said, his government would not be distracted in its efforts to uplift the state.
He said, “The declaration of the leadership of methodist church Nigeria to support us in agriculture and taxation is an indication to the fact that everyone in the state should engage in agriculture not only for consumption but for commercialization.
“Massive agricultural production remains the most sustainable alternative to success and progress in any country of the world especially Nigeria that is blessed with fertile soil.
“The wayout to our economic crisis is agriculture. Humanity has never found alternative to consumption of food as a means of survival.
“Science and technology has never found a replacement for food as a means of survival and it is quite idiotic for any nation or society to depend on others for the basic means of existence.
“It is also abnormal for any nation, country, society or community to depend externally on other for food production.
“The starting point of our economic recovery is the capacity to feed ourselves.
“For this reason, on hands must be deck to resuscitate the potentials in agriculture and explore its value for the betterment of all.
Governor Aregbesola further assured the leadership of the church of his administration’s collaborative gestures to ensure that all agricultural ventures in the state collaborate most effectively with the church to actualize its dreams as the state was ready to give it whatever size of land required to ensure that the church dreams come to past.
“This is important because the era of crude oil to me has gone. Any nation that based their wealth on digging the earth have ended up in penury.
“The only successful nations are those that simply believe in teeming the soil for the purpose of planting, cultivating and living on the produce of the land, none of such nations who had adopted farming had ever recorded penury.
“For your church to have openly declared your partnership with government in massive agricultural production apart from evangelism, is a testimony to the progressive nature of Methodist church in the world.
“This declaration by the Methodist church of Nigeria is a reflective signal to bring back our senses fully autonomous- independent nation because wealth is simply the capacity to feed oneself, individuals, community, state and nation as well as saving surplus for the future and for exportation.
“I commend you for your foresight, for your cleared objectives and unflinching support to aid our efforts on economic recovery.
“We will support you with extension services not only on land but in all ramifications to actualize your dreams.

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