Sanwo-Olu Meets Lagos Muslim Leaders, Promises Fairness To All

The governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has assured leaders of various Islamic organisations in the state that his administration would be fair to them in policy formulation if elected.

Sanwo-Olu and his running mate, Obafemi Hamzat, gave the assurance at an interactive session with the Muslim Community of Lagos State (MCLS) held at the Lagos Central Mosque, Idumota.

According to the APC standard-bearer, his administration will engage in regular consultations with religious bodies and other stakeholders in the state before taking decisions on issues affecting the state.

Earlier, MCLS president, Professor Tajudeen Gbadamosi, spoke on areas where the Muslim community felt slighted by the present administration, one of which is the appointment of tutors-general in education districts.

“As it stands, there is no Muslim among the six tutors-general in the state. The current situation is skewed against Muslims and we hope the incoming administration would correct the imbalance,” he said.

The Muslim leader also called for a clear policy on the enforcement of freedom of religion and worship.

According to him, there should be no religious discrimination or harassment in the state’s public schools and officially, all schools should close at 12.00 p.m. on Friday to enable Muslim pupils and teachers attend Juma’t service.

He said hijab, which, however, must conform to schools’ standards and adopted uniforms, should be allowed for willing Muslim students and pupils.

Professor Gbadamosi expressed appreciation for the state government’s decision to uphold the Appeal Court ruling on hijab, but noted that the decision had yet to be implemented in schools by the tutors-general.

He said the hijab issue might be one of the major criteria for supporting any political party seeking Muslims’ votes.

Muslims in the state, Gbadamosi said, request for the implementation of a bill passed by the state House of Assembly on the establishment of an Islamic court of law.

“We want a window for Islamic conduct of marriages, divorce and inheritance cases in courts, recognition of marriages conducted by Islamic centres and Muslim organisations and the creation of a registry to handle marriages conducted under Islamic law,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu thanked the Muslim community for coming up with thoughtful ideas for moving the state forward.

Professor Gbadamosi lamented the high rate of moral decadence and juvenile delinquency in the state which, he said, were due to government’s insincerity and neglect in the area of support for ideal ways of life.

“The government should ensure that skills acquisition for women and youth is of great concern to discourage immoralities and laziness when they have nothing doing. The government should have a policy on dress code in all higher institutions since nakedness is the bedrock of immoralities.

“Concerted effort should be made to eradicate drug abuse among youths. Lottery promo and bet games should be discouraged as they encourage laziness. There should be appointment of a sizeable number of women and youth to some enviable positions to serve as inspiration to coming generations. Reintroduction of literary debating society into schools not only in English Language but in all languages (Arabic, French and local languages) will go a long way in curb immoralities among the youths,” he said.

According to him, some of the things said were part of what “we are expecting from the people. You have done the right thing by presenting those issues to us. There is nothing like governance with the people. We will look into all issues raised and address them. We will be fair and transparent to Lagosians. You are an important stakeholder. We will not take you for granted,” he said.

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