By Muhammad Abdurrahman
Muslim students of Baptist High School, Ijagbo in Oyun Local Government of Kwara State, who were protesting for the right to use hijab were reportedly attacked by hoodlums and security agents yesterday, Thursday, 3rd February 2022. Four people were allegedly injured while one has been hospitalised.
As usual, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), has reacted to the incident by condemning the attack on the protesting students.
MURIC’s condemnation was contained in a statement issued by its director, Professor Ishaq Akintola, on the afternoon of Thursday, 3rd February 2022.
“Muslim students of Baptist High School, Ijagbo in Oyun Local Government of Kwara State, who were protesting for the right to use hijab were reportedly attacked by hoodlums and security agents today, Thursday, 3rd February 2022. Four people were allegedly injured while one has been hospitalised.
“Although it was rumoured that one person was killed, we prefer to be silent over that until we receive more details from our Kwara branch (https://tribuneonlineng.com/police-nscdc-quell-hijab-protest-in-kwara/; https://www.ekohotblog.com/2022/02/03/breaking-hijab-many-injured-as-peaceful-protest-turns-violent-in-kwara-photos/). We will update our statement immediately we have a full report.
“We strongly condemn this attack on innocent and underaged children. It is irresponsible, barbaric and inhuman. The protesting girls were not violent. It was a peaceful protest and a peaceful protest is a legitimate tool for the expression of grievances, particularly when it is peaceful.
“MURIC singles out the principal of the school for insubordination, willful disobedience and disrespect for constituted authority. This is in view of his high-handedness and his refusal to recognise the state government’s circular which approved the use of hijab.
“In the meantime, and in the interest of peace, we make the following demands:
1. The school must be shut down immediately to forestall further breakdown of law and order.
2. The school principal must be summoned to the Ministry of Education to personally collect his quarry letter for insubordination, willful disobedience and disregard for constituted authority.
3. The school principal must be suspended with immediate effect.
4. Government should decide other disciplinary action or actions to be taken against the school principal for disobeying the government’s circular which approved the use of hijab.
5. A probe must be instituted into the circumstances surrounding the commotion.
6. All those injured should be treated at the expense of the state government.
7. In case of death from injuries sustained during the attack, full compensation should be paid to the parents of the victim or victims.
8. Expenses incurred by the government in handling this case should be deducted from the principal’s gratuity on his retirement.
9. The state government should add its identity to the names of all schools in the state, e.g. Oyun Baptist High School should become ‘Oyun Government Baptist High School’.