The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has described the recent Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) recruitment as a deliberate exercise in religious marginalisation, economic deprivation and undisguised discrimination against Muslim women. Apparently reacting to the FRSC nationwide recruitment exercise recently conducted in which applicants were requested to appear in white shorts, white round neck T-shirts, canvass and socks, MURIC’s director, Prof. Ishaq Akintola in a statement yesterday condemned the agency for tactically excluding Muslim women.
The group wondered why FRSC would issue a directive which was designed to exclude a section of Nigerian citizens.
“The whole world knows that Muslim women do not wear shorts. It is therefore strange to hear the FRSC requesting applicants of both sexes to appear in shorts. FRSC is a federal road safety concern and its recruitment exercise should be inclusive.
“Or is FRSC telling us that it only recognises Christian women alone? Is FRSC telling us that it cannot tolerate the sight of Muslim women? Is this federal agency only interested in giving jobs to Christian women to the disadvantage of their Muslim counterparts? Is FRSC unaware of the economic implication of this among the Nigerian Muslim population? Is this not a deliberate attempt to empower Christians and continuously impoverish Muslims? “We believe it is a deliberate attempt to exclude Muslims. We are disappointed that FRSC has joined the clique of anti-Muslim institutions that claim secularism in order to short-change Muslims. Muslims are being shut out of the economy of this country,” it said. According to the group, Muslims are being dragged to the bottom of the pyramid of poverty in Nigeria. It alleged that instructions which make it impossible for Muslims to participate in nation-building were being rolled out on a daily basis in public and private sectors and reminded FRSC that the marginalisation of any section of the Nigerian population by any agency was a violation of Section 14(4) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which stipulates that;
“The composition of the Government of the Federation, a state, a local government council, or any of the agencies of such government or council, and the conduct of the affairs of the Government or council or such agencies shall be carried out in such manner as to recognise the diversity of the people within its area of authority and the need to promote a sense of belonging and loyalty among all the people of the Federation.” It therefore rejected the FRSC recruitment exercise for failing to recognise the diversity of our population, saying that it was illegal, unlawful and unconstitutional to issue directives which are designed to exclude any section of the country. It added that the exercise could best be described as incomplete, sectional and discriminatory. “To complete the exercise, FRSC authorities must give Muslim women their own opportunity to participate. A new date must be fixed for the recruitment of Muslim women in the next few weeks. Nigeria belongs to us all. MURIC will not fold its hands while our common patrimony is shared out among Christians alone,” MURIC said.
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