Last week’s refusal of the Council of Legal Education (CLE) to call to bar a University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) Law graduate, Miss Firdaus Amosa, for insisting on wearing Hijab (a veil traditionally worn by Muslim women) under lawyer’s wig during the Call to Bar ceremony, has drawn the response of the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III.
Furious reactions have trailed the incident.
The Sultan’s contribution to the debate was contained in the speech delivered on his behalf by the Wazirin of Katsina, Professor Sanni Abubakar Lugga, who represented him at the national convention of Muslim Public Affairs Centre (MPAC) on Saturday, in Lagos.
Abubakar hit out at the action of the legal council.
He said, “wearing of hijab was not only an Islamic mode of dressing but a Christian mode of dressing and that it is a dressing for every decent woman. It is a dressing for any woman who wants to preserve her chastity in public.
“Nigerian Constitution it is absolutely clear. Why should Nigerian Muslims be molested and even denied their own right? The Appeal Court ruling in Ilorin is there, the Appeal Court in Lagos and also the High Court all delivered judgment in favour of Hijab.
“Justice Alooma, the former CJN, Justice Bukalchuwa and other Senior Justices in Nigeria wear their Hijab and then the wig on top of it. The Nigeria Judicial Council (NJC), the highest body in the judiciary has not said, ‘no, they should stop’ which means the Nigerian Constitution allows the Hijab, the Nigerian Courts through these three judgments have allowed the Hijab and the NJC through these senior judges has allowed the Hijab.
“Why will a legal school refuse our sister’s induction into the judiciary simply because she is wearing Hijab? Is the law school saying they are above the NJC, are they above the Nigerian Constitution, are they above these three senior courts?”