PAC to probe Hijaab fracas in Balaka

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    The Public Affairs Committee (PAC) has established a task force which is currently in Balaka district to probe the religious unrest between Muslims and Christians on hijaab at M’manga schools in the district.

    Information gathered by Malawi Muslim Website from one of the Hijaab Task Force members in the area,PAC will make recommendations on the incident.

    “PAC task force won’t report to us when they are done with their fact finding mission on the matter,”

    “The team which has been sent by PAC to investigate the matter will report back to PAC who will then write a report and recommendations to the government through the Ministry of Education Science and Technology. The ministry will issue a statement to the nation and advise accordingly,” he told Malawi Muslim Website.

    Some weeks ago, government ordered that no school should be sending learners back over dress code, an issue which has seen the Catholic Church refusing. The church is saying that laws of the county do not allow such dress code.

    The incident has faced mixed reactions in the country.

    PAC is a religious body comprised of leaders from different religious beliefs.

    Recently, United Nations said it is unjustifiable to stop Muslim girls from attending classes for wearing Hijaab.

    According to a statement issued by UN Resident Representive, Ms Maria Jose Torres, Malawians should respect each other’s religious beliefs and respect fundamental human rights and freedoms.

    “The United Nations is concerned by the violence that took place in Balaka on 4th November 2019 between Christian and Muslim groups, resulting in at least two persons being seriously injured. Reports that the violence started after two girls were prevented from attending school at M’manga school for wearing a hijab are of particular concern,”

    “The rights to freedom of expression and religion are fundamental rights that ensure human dignity and a functional democracy. Preventing access to services such as education because students choose to wear an expression of their religion goes against these important human rights and international standards on freedom of education,” reads a statement.