PRESS STATEMENT RELEASED AT THE END OF THE EXPANDED GPC OF THE NSCIA HELD ON WEDNESDAY, MUHARRAM 10, 1435 AH
PRESS STATEMENT RELEASED AT THE END OF THE EXPANDED GENERAL PURPOSE COMMITTEE OF THE NSCIA HELD ON WEDNESDAY, MUHARRAM 10, 1435 A.H. ( NOVEMBER 13, 2013) AT THE NATIONAL MOSQUE AUDITORIUM, ABUJA
The Expanded General Purpose Committee (GPC) of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) held its meeting in Abuja on Wednesday 10th Muharram 1435 A.H. (13th November 2013).
The meeting was attended by Principal Officers of the Council and key Muslim leaders from across the States of the Federation. The major outcome of the meeting is as stated hereunder:
- The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) is concerned over the disturbing trend of marginalizing Muslims in key appointments in Federal Government institutions. Data available to the Council indicate a systematic cleansing of Muslims from key positions of authority. This is dangerous for a nation which should encourage harmony and unity based on equity, justice and respect for diversity and pluralism.
- Council also notes that admission into key military institutions such as NDA and patterns of recruitment into police and other security agencies do not show sensitivity to balance and social indices such as faith. Muslims who are qualified should be admitted and trained on a scale that shows respect for a multi-religious nation such as Nigeria.
- The Constitution guarantees to every Nigerian the freedom of worship and religious practice. Appropriate Muslim dressing for women in all public engagements and outings is a mandatory requirement for Muslims. Governments and other institutions which deny Muslim females their right to dress appropriately such as wearing of hijab with uniforms are therefore in violation of the rights of the Nigerian Muslims. Council calls on the Federal and State Governments and all other private and public institutions to stop the policy of depriving Muslim women of their rights to dress in accordance with the demands of their faith.
- Council notes that President Goodluck Jonathan has welcomed the recommendation of the Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of Security Challenges in the North that the Federal Government should set up mechanism for providing appropriate relief to all victims of the insurgency of Jamaatu Ahlis Sunnah Li Daawati wal Jihad. Council urges the President to expedite action towards establishing such a mechanism so that the much-needed relief can be made available to all those who deserve it.
- Council observes that the National Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC) has produced a new curriculum from primary to secondary school which has deprived young Nigerians of their rights to receive full and mandatory religious education. This is a major failing by all governments and is unacceptable. All Nigerian children must be availed full opportunities to receive religious instruction and training until at least the end of Senior Secondary School. The new curriculum which relegates Islamic Studies/ Christian Religious Studies (IS/ CRS) to a part of a subject (up to Junior Secondary School) and which made the subjects optional at the Senior Secondary level be reversed so that the two are made independent, core and compulsory up to the Senior Secondary level.
Muhammad K. Qasim
Ag. Director of Publicity, NSCIA
FOR AND ON BEHALF OF NSCIA