The President, Federal Capital Territory Baptist Conference, Rev. Dogara Gwana, has said that the verdict of the Supreme Court upholding the wearing of Hijab in Lagos schools is not well-received by Christians.
The PUNCH had reported that the apex court in a six-to-one majority judgment, held that banning of female Muslim students from wearing Hijab to school is a violation of their fundamental rights to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion.
However, Gwana, during a press conference at First Baptist Church, Garki, Abuja on Thursday, said that schools with Islamic roots still maintain their tradition while it’s not so for those with Christian roots.
He said, “The recent Supreme Court’s decision on the wearing of Hijab in public schools does not go down well with Nigerian Christians, especially the Nigerian Baptist Convention.
“All over the country, there are some schools that were established by some Islamic organizations which were taken over by the Federal government when the Christian missions’ schools were taken over. Yet till today, those schools with Islamic origins are still maintaining their traditions and cultures. But their Christian counterparts are being denied such rights.”
He also called for the return of Christian schools to their original owners.
“This is why we are joining the Nigerian Baptist Convention in calling for the return of all Christian schools that were taken over by the government during the military era. Returning those schools will help their original owners to restore sanity back to the system.
“The departure of the missionaries from running those schools remains the foundation of the dwindling fortunes and standards. We, therefore, call on the government to return these schools to the original owners to run them with the original intended mission and purpose,” he added.
Gwana also stated that the primary elections that produced several candidates were money-induced, adding that it leaves a very bad taste in the Nigerian democracy.
He said, “It is unfortunate that the few people called delegates who have the responsibility of presenting elective options to Nigerians were practically bought by those with deep pockets.
“It is most unfortunate that those who aspire to govern Nigeria were spending foreign currencies unabated. The helpless Nigerian sees his preferred candidate thrown out simply because his pocket is light-weighted. We are now left with money bags as the options for elective offices at all the levels.”
The cleric further urged the Christian community to resist any political candidate that fields running mates of the same religion.
He said, “Now the presidential candidates are selecting running mates and some are considering picking their kin from the same religious enclaves. They do not have any argument as to the region where the running mate should come from but they make attempts to pick from their religious bedrooms.
“The FCT Baptist Conference joins other well-meaning Nigerians especially the Christian Association of Nigeria to state unequivocally that such actions are most unfair and unjust.”