Hijab Right On Exercise
Finally, Malawi has taken a step of allowing Muslim girls to put on hijab (Islamic headscarf) in all education institutions in the country including government sponsored schools.
The religious bodies of Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM), the Malawi Council of Churches (MCC) and the Evangelical Association of Malawi (EAM) on behalf of the Christians and the Muslim Association of Malawi-MAM and the Quadria Muslim Association of Malawi-QMAM on behalf of the Muslims in the Republic of Malawi have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the issue.
The colourful ceremony was held in Blantyre on 17th June 2021 and was graced by the Minister of Education
Science and Technology, Agness Nyalonje and Minister of Civic Education, Peace and Unity, Timothy Mtambo.
The MOU was signed by all parties involved including the Public Affairs Committee as the mediator of the
re-conciliatory talks. It continues to highlight that Mediator shall be appointed within 14 days from the date the complaint has been referred to the Public Affairs Committee (PAC).
Among others the MOU has been developed with the spirit of creating a conducive learning environment for Muslim learners in Government assisted Christian School and also seeks to safeguard proprietorship, nature, mission and values of faith aided schools.
Speaking at the signing ceremony the Minister of Education recommended the two sides for resolving their misunderstandings as it affected the education system in the country, especially of the Muslim girl child.
”It is very much important that today we are celebrating such a peaceful understanding among the two groups, the issue as we all know threatened national peace and unity as it forced our girls out of school like those from Mpiri
primary school in Mangochi district,” she said.
Nyalonje further said ‘The government will continue making sure that the Education system and religious rights in the country are never violated.”
In his remarks, PAC chairperson Patrick Thawale said Muslim girls have the right to put on hijab of the color similar to their school uniform as approved by the concerned parties upon reaching a consensus.
“The whole intention is in a bid to promote a common understanding among religions in the country,” said
“For years we have been living together as Malawians as such we need to promote the coexistence between the Christian and Islamic faiths in the country for better development,” he said.
The wearing of hijab in Christian schools has for so long been a controversy among the Christian school owners and he community.
As a result, it led to the formation other hijab task force a grouping that was advocating for girls to be allowed in
putting on hijab in all environment. The chairperson of Hijab Task Force Abdul Salaam Faduweck has been doing several campaigns promoting the hijab dressing as it is very paramount in Islam.
“It is a welcome development; this is what we were looking for. All we wanted is to have a common understanding on
our faiths,” he said.
Hijab is obligatory for Muslim women. Women are required to wear hijab everywhere they go. Hijab symbolizes
modesty and righteousness in Islam.