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Moslems Set Vision 2035 On Girl Child Education 

In time immemorial, Moslems have often regarded and treated the female gender as objects of reproduction or subhuman beings. Educating a girl child was not only regarded by the Moslem faithful as absurd, but was equally treated as a taboo or a violation of their custom and tradition.

It was in a bid to right the wrongs of the past and chart the way for the future that the newly appointed Islamic Education Secretary, Hamza Matanga and other executives, on Wednesday, August 13, 2014, converged on Buea, Southwest Region for a seminar.

The seminar was intended to discuss the problems plaguing the Islamic educational system in the country.

Deliberations at the seminar were hinged on the theme “Sound Islamic education, necessary tool for an emerging Cameroon in 2035”. 

Addressing participants at the seminar, Matanga stressed on the need for youths, irrespective of their gender, to be given equal opportunity to develop their potentials in their respective spheres of competence. 

Earlier in a key note address, Sheikh Bala Abu Umar condemned the high rate of illiteracy in Moslem communities. 

Meanwhile, Zenabu Abdulaye Jongi, the lone representative of the women’s union, appealed to the Moslem authorities to strongly fight against early marriages, force labour, illiteracy and power tussle in the Moslem community. She stressed on the need for leaders to be united, embrace logical rather than extremist and un-pragmatic ways of doing things.

On his part, the Imam of Kumba, whose area still uphold the vices enumerated by Jonji above, strongly objected to the idea of the education of the Moslem girl child.

 To him, even the Moslem clergy cannot be trusted as the Imams themselves go astray in the process. Left to the Imam, girls should be trained on how to manage a home and to pray and not engage in any learning activity that will expose them to western culture and ideas. An idea still upheld by the Nigerian Islamic sect, Boko Haram.

At the end of the seminar, Matanga Hamza told these reporters that “everything will not be done with the speed of light. The first thing would be to revamp the Islamic system of education and make sure that there is an Islamic teacher in every Moslem school.”

On the Imam’s stand concerning the education of the Moslem girl child, Matanga promised to enhance the teaching of the Islamic faith in the schools alongside western education. He stressed on the need to verify facts from the Koran.

At the end, the Moslem faithful resolved to champion vision 2035 by educating their children irrespective of sex and gender. 

By Aisha Endale Njeba, Andrew Nsoseka & Yana Nzumato 

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