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Nigeria: BOD Okays Hijab for Muslim barred from call to bar

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Law and Hijab

A female law student barred from the country’s call to bar last year for wearing the Muslim head covering has been asked to attend the ceremony billed for later this year.

Firdaus Amasa was denied access to the call to bar ceremony in the capital Abuja for insisting on wearing her religious head covering in the hall, triggering a backlash from the country’s Muslim community which accused the law school of religious discrimination.

The controversy has led to lawsuits, especially after the parliament called a public hearing on the issue.

But president of the Muslim Lawyers Association of Nigeria (MULAN), Kamal Dawud, told Anadolu Agency on Thursday that Amasa has now been granted approval to attend the legal ritual later this year.

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“The Body of Benchers (BOD) met today to discuss the report of a committee established to look at the call to bar of Amasa,” he said. “To the best of my knowledge, the report was not considered for one reason or the other. But they resolved that the girl should be called to bar with her head covered at the next call to bar event,” according to the law professor.

“It’s a victory because what we are saying is that she has her rights and should not be denied such rights under whatever guise. This is a right donated by the Constitution. The only institution that has the say over interpretation of the constitution and the only institution empowered to make pronouncements on whether any law or act is consistent with the Constitution or not is the court and so far the decisions of the court of appeal are in favor of the hijaab.”

The BOD, an ultra-conservative body of current and retired senior judges and lawyers, has the final say on the codes applicable for the legal profession in Nigeria.

The MULAN, along with the country’s Muslim community, championed the #JusticeForFridaus campaign to have Amasa called to the bar as well as scrap whatever laws that proscribe the use of the head covering at such events.

An appeals court in 2016 held that the head covering is a fundamental human rights of every female Muslim and may be worn anywhere of her choice, striking down a government circular that had restricted its use in the public school.

The government has appealed the ruling at the Supreme Court.

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Motherland News

Nigeria: Woman Dies During Church Deliverance in Lagos

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A 51-year-old woman, Taibat Kareem, has collapsed and died during a deliverance service in a Cherubim and Seraphim Church  community, Lagos after allegedly drinking a substance said to be given to her by the church prophet, Olowomeye Ola, for deliverance.



The issue provoked reactions from the residents who went to the church and brought out the pastor to mob him on the street.

However, before he could be mobbed, the Isheri Police Division moved to the church, arrested two suspects including the pastor and took them to the police station for interrogation.

The incident happened at Oriofe Street in Ijegun in the outskirts of Lagos where the church is located.

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According to the residents, her supplier, one Ayodele Isaac, a herbalist, invited the late Taibat, who dealt in local herbs, to take some herbs for sale. She was going to take the herbs when Pastor Ola accosted her and told her that she needed deliverance. He then took her to the church for prayers; it was during the prayer session that Pastor Ola gave her a liquid substance to drink. Immediately she drank the substance, she collapsed on the ground inside the church.

 Pastor Ola reportedly took her to his own room where he allegedly tried to revive her. It was in the midst of the confusion that the residents raised the alarm, attacked the pastor and attempted to mob him before the police rescued him.
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The corpse of the deceased, Taibat, was deposited at an undisclosed mortuary for autopsy while the two suspects mentioned over her death, Ola and Isaac, were transferred to the SCIID Panti, Yaba, for further investigation.

 When our correspondent visited Isheri Osun Police Division, the DPO was not around to comment on the incident.

However, police sources at the station that the matter had been transferred to SCIID’s Homicide Department.

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United States to reinstate diplomatic presence in Somalia.

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The United States will re-establish a permanent diplomatic presence in Somalia, nearly 30 years after the U.S. embassy was closed as a civil war raged in the Horn of Africa country.

Somalia has been trying to recover from the conflict that engulfed the country in 1991, when clan warlords overthrew a dictator and then turned on each other.



“This historic event reflects Somalia’s progress in recent years and is another step forward in formalizing U.S. diplomatic engagement in Mogadishu,” the State Department said in a statement late on Tuesday.

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Somalia has in recent years faced an insurgency by the al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab militant group, as well as famine and maritime piracy.

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While parts of the country are plagued by militant violence, a degree of stability in the capital, Mogadishu, has drawn investment from Somalis at home and abroad.

In September, the World Bank approved $80 million in grants to Somalia to fund public finance reforms, the first disbursement to the country in 30 years.

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