The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) has blamed the management of the University of Ibadan (UI) for not giving a level playing ground to Muslims in the university community.
The apex body for Islamic Affairs in the country disclosed this during a meeting, which was the seventh in its series, was chaired by the council’s President-General and Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III.
The NSCIA also condemned the state of insecurity across the country, and urged the security operatives and leadership across all government levels to stem the ugly tide and restore peace and tranquillity to every parts of the country.
The council equally urged Muslims to be weary of the evils of fake news and advised them to stay calm on the issue of mosque demolition in Rivers state pending the report of the fact-finding committee set up on the issue.
It also urged the state government to abide by the court rulings on the matter of religious discrimination taken to court by the Muslim students of the Rivers State University.
According to the communiqué, the Council condemned what it described as the nonchalant attitude of concerned authorities in Bauchi state over alleged displacement of the Tafawa Balewa Muslim community from their ancestral land.
It said its position on the University of Ibadan was against the backdrop of the incessant cases of allegation of harassment of Muslim pupils of the university’s International School over the use of hijab, fixing of statutory academic and management meetings of the university for periods dedicated to Muslims’ Friday prayer among others.
The council said the university under the current administration has made it a habit to discriminate against Muslim students in classrooms, and deny Muslim academic and non-academic staff from participating in key decision-making processes on the campus.
The communiqué reads in part; “It is rather unfortunate that University of Ibadan, whose founding fathers championed the cause of scholarship by establishing the Centre for Arabic Documentation, introduced Certificate and Diploma programmes in Islamic Studies and Arabic, created Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies and tapped the resources of Arabic to create and enrich Ibadan School of History.
“It is the same university being used by a bigot to eliminate the programmes, discourage Muslim girls from International School, Ibadan, segregate Muslims from Christians in the classrooms so that the latter can be given more attention, fix official meetings for the period of Friday worship and insisted Muslims must be de-Islamized before benefitting from a school established by the university.”
The council therefore urged the National Assembly to initiate bills that would streamline and unambiguously legitimize the use of hijab in public institutions in the country.