The Lagos State Government has directed all state institutions to allow female Muslim students and pupils to adorn the hijab head covering in accordance with the Supreme Court Judgment delivered on the 17th of June, 2022.
In the Judgment, the apex court had declared that pupils and students should be allowed to wear the Hijab if they desired.
The seven-member panel of the Supreme Court affirmed the July 21, 2016 judgment of the Court of Appeal, Lagos, which set aside the October 17, 2014 judgment by Justice Grace Onyeabo of the High Court of Lagos State, which upheld the hijab restriction.
The Supreme Court held that wearing the hijab was an Islamic injunction and an act of worship required of Muslims, and consequently, the banning of female Muslim students from wearing it to school is a violation of their fundamental rights to freedom of thought, conscience, religion, the dignity of human persons and freedom from discrimination. The Court heavily relied on section 38 of the 1999 Constitution, which guarantees every Nigerian citizen the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.
Below is the full text of the circular:
LAGOS STATE GOVERNMENT
Ref. No: CIR/HOS/22/Vol.1/068
Office of the Head of Service.
Public Service Office,
5th December, 2022
CIRCULAR NO: 068
THE DEPUTY GOVERNOR
THE RT. HONOURABLE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY THE CHIEF JUDGE
SECRETARY TO THE STATE GOVERNMENT
CHIEF OF STAFF
HONOURABLE COMMISSIONERS/ SPECIAL ADVISERS
CLERK, STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY STATE AUDITOR-GENERAL
AUDITOR-GENERAL FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENTS CHAIRMEN, LOCAL GOVERNMENT COUNCILS/ LOCAL COUNCIL DEVT. AREAS
CHAIRMAN, CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, HEALTH SERVICE COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, JUDICIAL SERVICE COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, AUDIT SERVICE COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, LOCAL GOVERNMENT SERVICE COMMISSION CHAIRMAN, TEACHING SERVICE COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, LAGOS STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY BERVICE COMMISSION CHAIRMAN, LAGOS STATE PENSION COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, LAGOS STATE INDEPENDENT ELECTORAL COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, STATE SPORTS COMMISSION
CHAIRMAN, STATE UNIVERSAL BASIC EDUCATION BOARD
CHAIRMAN, LAGOS STATE PRIMARY HEALTHCARE BOARD SERVICE
EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN, LAGOS STATE INTERNAL REVENUE
HEADS OF EXTRA-MINISTERIAL DEPARTMENTS
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICERS OF PARASTATAL ORGANISATIONS
CHIEF REGISTRAR OF THE HIGH COURT OF LAGOS STATE
HEADS OF TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS
CHIEF MEDICAL DIRECTOR/MEDICAL DIRECTORS OF HOSPITALS
HEADS OF ADMINISTRATION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENTS/LOCAL COUNCIL DEV. AREAS
SUPREME COURT JUDGEMENT ON THE USE OF HIJAB IN LAGOS STATE SCHOOLS
- It is hereby notified for general information that the Supreme Court Judgement SC.910/2016 delivered on the 17 of June, 2022 on the use of Hijab as it affects Pupils/Students in Lagos State Schools has declared that Students should be allowed to wear the Hijab if desired.
- A Comprehensive Guideline on the use of Hijab in Schools will be issued by the State Government in due course, however you are to note that the judgement is binding on all schools in the State.
- As a law abiding administration, all Accounting Officers are to note the contents of this Circular for inmediate compliance and give it the deserved Service-wide publicity.
Hakeem Muri-Okunola, Head of Service.