Osun Religious Crisis: Gov. Aregbesola visits merged school; ...conducts peace meeting between Christians, Muslims and traditional worshipers

Governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola, Monday insisted that his government neither approved nor disapproved the use of hijab (Muslim scarf covering the head of female) in any school in the state.

The governor, while making his remarks at the peace meeting between the Muslim and Christian communities at the Baptist High School in Iwo and the distribution and assessment of the performance of Opon Imo, noted that it was the court’s position that the status quo ante be maintained until the case is determined.

Aregbesola stressed that his government, being a product of rule of law, was guided in all its actions in strict adherence to the principles of the rule of law in the state.

According to him, "We are a product of the rule of law and this has guided all our actions. As we have said in the past, we have not approved the use of hijab in any school. Let me repeat this again for the hearing of mischief makers who have been working tirelessly to bring religious war to our state.
"Those prompting chaos and conflagration in our state; those who have well established antecedence of violent behaviour; those sowing the seed of discord in our schools and communities and inciting one religion against another, as we have said in the past, government did not at any time approve the use of hijab in any school, before the matter went to court.
“It is the court’s position that the status quo ante be maintained until the case is determined.”

He pointed out that the state government had set up a committee on discipline in public schools and when the report is out, government would begin to enforce discipline in all schools.

Aregbesola added that the future his administration was preparing for students in the state has no place for unruly and undisciplined persons. In his words, "Yoruba people have a tradition of accommodation and inclusion; that is why our families are interwoven around all religions.
"Some people, goaded from hell, however, are working to break our bond of unity by beating the drum of religious war. They will fail and only they and their families will dance to that evil beat."

Representatives of the three religions in the state lamented that things that are ordinarily unconnected with learning and knowledge have now been constituting impediments to students' progress in their studies.

They stated that none of them supported the unconventional ways students have been dressing to school.

Rev Bayo Ademuyiwa who spoke on behalf of the Christians, said: "We are in support of programmes and policies of the state government on education since the last three years. We also express our disappointment over the crisis playing out in Baptist High School for sometimes. We want to tell the state government that we are lovers of peace and we abhor disunity."

Alhaji Idris Magaji, who spoke on behalf of Muslim parents, said the three religions have the responsibility to fight against indecent dressing and promote love and unity among all students regardless of their faiths.

“We are a peace loving people. And we are proud of the many innovations in the education sector of the current administration. We must not allow agents of destablisation to deprive our children the quality education for which the current administration has been working for,” Magaji said.

Mr. Ifawole Anifalaje, who also spoke on behalf of the traditional religious worshippers, prayed that peace reigns in the community and that the vision of the present administration for quality education be realised.

“We don’t have problem with any faith. What we also want is the progress of our children. We were never part of the plan to make any masquerade to come to Baptist High School. Some other people looking for trouble must have instigated the coming of a masquerade to the school compound,” he said.

Two students of the school, Aremu Olukayode and Bashir Mutiyat, who spoke on behalf of the students, thanked the state government for the various educational projects such as Opon Imo, new schools, furniture and recruitment of new teachers.

It was a tumultuous reception for Aregbesola as he arrived at the premises of the Baptist High School, which had been the centre of protests among students over the use of hijab.
The governor who dressed in the uniform of a High School student (Brown trouser and a shirt with a school cap) stirred the students as they gathered around him at the school premises.


  1. its better before it get out of hand


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