MSSN seeks greater protection for the girl-child

THE Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN) has advocated the strengthening of the protection of girls across the world against exploitation, dehumanisation and other forms of unfair treatment.

It particularly condemned all acts of violation of the rights of Muslim girls in Nigeria and called for their cessation forthwith.

The MSSN made the advocacy and condemnation in a statement by its National Public Relations Officer, AbdulAzeez Oladejo, in respect of this year’s edition of the International Day of the Girl Child, which was marked on October 11.

It noted that in 2012, the United Nations set aside the date as the International Day of the Girl Child to highlight and address the needs and challenges the girl child and promote their empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights.

But the group expressed regrets that while the world was making a steady progress towards realising this goal, some people had continued to consciously victimise, exploit and dehumanise girls.

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According to the MSSN, the ability of the United Nations to further stipulate appropriate sanctions for perpetrators of such deviant activities will go a long way in safeguarding the female children.

The statement reads in part: “To us as Muslim students, a day like this is important as it reminds us that there are people who are still committed to the lofty goal of raising the status of the girl-child as espoused by Islam.

“It also tells us that there are concerted efforts against the perpetration of deviant activities (like gender inequality, forced labour, forced marriage, humiliating cultural practices, denial of right to education and denial of right to inheritance) against the girl-child in third world countries, including Nigeria.

“Most importantly, this day reminds us of the traumatic experiences of the Muslim girls across the country because of their resolve to exhibit their fundamental human rights of using hijab as they pursue their education; from nine-year old Aisha AbdulAleem in Ogun State to Muslim girls in Lagos State and those at the International School, Ibadan. This calls for action because ensuring the rights and safe space for the girls should be beyond rhetoric.

“We use the occasion of this year’s edition of the International Day of the Girl Child to condemn all acts of violation of rights of Muslim girl across the country, while assuring all those who are currently experiencing any form of victimisation that Allah’s help is indeed near.”

“We also wish that the Muslim girl should be motivated by the theme for this year’s International Day of the Girl Child (Girl Force: Unscripted, Unstoppable) and know that the Muslim girl is simply unscripted and unstoppable.”

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