SUPREME COURT’S RULING ON HIJAB: Our belief in judiciary strengthened, says Onike of Nasfat
The Chief Missioner of Nasrul-Lahi-l-Fatih Society (NASFAT) Imam Abdul-Azeez Onike has congratulated the entire Muslim women and other ladies of faith on the well-deserved victory at the Nigerian Supreme Court that affirmed their right to dress in accordance with their religious dictate, which commands them to maintain modesty and privacy from unrelated males by wearing the hijab – the Islamic dress for Muslim women – which is a symbol of personal space/ownership, privatisation of physical charms and bodily attraction. The decision to wear hijab is a personal statement echoing that a woman’s body is her own private business.
Scripturally speaking, the Almighty Allah says: “O Prophet, enjoin your wives and your daughters and the believing women to draw a part of their outer coverings around them. It is likelier that they will be recognised and not molested. Allah is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful”(Q33:59)
Evidently, modest dressing is a sign of virtue of all religions, as depicted by the images of our highly revered Virgin Mary, may God continue to bless her, not to mention the fact that, various professions and institutions have minimum dress code for men and women, that do not support indecency, immodesty, and nudity.
According to Onike, the long unnecessary battle seemed like someone taking pain reliever for someone else’s headache, because how do you explain someone wanting to dress modestly as required by her religion and another person challenging her on that, whereas, those who challenge women of faith for choosing to dress modestly do not see anything wrong in those who choose to dress almost naked in public all in the name of fashion thereby creating the erroneous impression that women are beauty toys, whose intellectual capability should take a back stage.
Some of the takeaways from the rulings are that Muslims will always seek refuge in the state’s recognised judicial platform, by going to court whenever their rights are trampled upon, as against opting for jungle, mob or vigilante justice. It has also reinforced the Muslims’ belief that, the court remains the baston of hope for Nigerian Muslims.
The NASFAT spiritual head however admonishes Muslims to be magnanimous in victory and ensure that there is no form of abuse of this God’s support and vindication. He also calls on the leadership of our government agencies and educational institutions at all levels to respect the rights of Muslims to worship including allowing workers and students alike to observe the Friday prayers at the stipulated time.
He concluded by praying for the MSSN leadership, the team of lawyers (including the deceased lead lawyer, Chief Gani Adetola-Kaseem SAN) and the entire Islamic workers and enthusiasts who worked tirelessly for this victory, may Allah add their efforts to their scale of good deeds on the day of judgement.