Barely four years after the management of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife on the order of top members of the Muslim community shut down halls of residence mosque, the management in a letter dated 24th of December approved its reopening.
The approval to reopening the worship centers was contained in a circular signed by the acting director in the Vice-Chancellor’s Office, I.O Adejuwon, the move was realised after the matter was presented to the School Council.
Recall that, the mosques were forcefully shut down in 2017 following ideological clash, flagrant disobedience to the constituted authorities among others between members of the Muslim Students Society of Nigeria (MSSN), OAU branch, and some top members of the Muslim community.
This development might not be unconnected with the concerted efforts of some highly placed stakeholders within and outside the university community particularly the chief Imam, Prof. Abubakar Abefe Sanusi, The Dean of Students’ Affairs, Prof Isiaka Olamilekan Aransi, other members of University of Ife Muslim Graduates Association, UNIFEMGA, among others.
Prof. Sanusi through a letter dated 19th December, 2020 has urged the school management to reopen the mosques within the halls of residence while assuring that peace and sanity would be restored.
However, the School management via its Council has given three terms and conditions which must be religiously followed, these include:
- The mosques should be designed such that the inner portion would be visible to those outside.
- Activities in the mosques should be conducted in ways that will be visible to everyone and not in any way shrouded in secrecy; and
- The activities of the students should be supervised by the office of the Chief Imam, and biannual reports to the office of the Vice-Chancellor would be appreciated.
Before the mosques were shut down by the management on 3rd of June, 2017, Muslims students and some non-Muslim students did attend series of tutorials organized by executive members of Muslim Students, Islamic Programs among other eye-opening and life-changing events.