The Nigerian Islamic human rights organisation, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), has appealed to the Lagos State government (LASG) to revisit the education sector, with a view to correcting the glaring lop-sidedness in the appointment of tutor-generals and school principals.
MURIC also raised the issue of many qualified Muslim teachers on grade level 17 who are still marking time when they should have been appointed principals.
The Director of MURIC, Professor Ishaq Akintola, made the appeal in a statement to DAILY POST on Tuesday.
“Akinwunmi Ambode made it 4:2 in favour of Christians. The tricky game employed was to appoint some Muslims who have long converted to Christianity but who retained their Muslim names. It would then appear as if Muslims were appointed yet they were cleverly shortchanged.
“This implies that Christian principals are 84.6% while Muslim principals are 15. 4%. Like in the case of tutor-generals, some principals who have long converted to Christianity but who retained their Muslim names were made principals while the real Muslims are left to rot in the system.
“Again, the use of hijab in public schools is largely determined by the disposition of school principals. Since the ratio is 84:15, it becomes clear why the majority of the school principals disallow the use of hijab in their schools despite a subsisting court judgement in favour of its use.
“This should not be difficult if the authorities consult leaders of the Muslim Teachers Association (MUTAN). We believe that our call is timely and it is more so particularly when the state government has recently invited applications into the position of TG/PS and it is poised to recruit more teachers.
“The question of non-avalability of qualified Muslims does not arise because Lagos is replete with hundreds of well qualified and competent Muslims who are yearning for the opportunity to exhibit their potentials. In addition, many Muslim teachers who are on grade level 17 appear to have been placed on redundancy as they are not appointed as principals or vice principals. Their list can easily be obtained from the leadership of MUTAN or that of the Lagos State Muslim Community.
“This is not praise-singing. The records are there for all to applaud Lagos. Apart from Enugu in 1980, Lagos was one of the first states to establish a state university (1984), the first to increase maternity leave to six months, the first to build an atlantic city (Eko Atlantic), the first to introduce local council development areas (LCDA) and many more pacesetting initiatives. Lagos leads, others follow.
“We recall that the Lagos Muslim Community under the able leadership of Professor T.G.O. Gbadamosi and the Chief Imam of Lagos, His Eminence, Engr Sulaimon Oluwatoyin Abou Noula, raised some of these issues in the presence of the incumbent governor during the 2019 electoral campaigns. We honestly believe that it is high time they were addressed,” he stated.