- I want more women in Sharia law, says Judge
Britain’s first female Shari’ah court judge, Dr. Amra Bone, believes her trailblazing path shall inspire other women to follow. This came as more Muslims reacted to the historic call to bar of Firdausa Amasa to bar with her hijab on. Director, Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), Professor Ishaq Akintola, said that the Nigerian law school had succeeded in restoring the confidence of Nigerian Muslims in legal education by giving recognition to the identity of Amasa.
The Nigerian law school called Amasa and 11 other Muslims to bar on Tuesday; they were allowed to wear their hijab as they joined other 1,550 students. Amasa, it would be recalled, was denied entry into the hall for the ceremony in December 2017. MURIC appealed to the authorities to allow other female Muslim students who had decided to wear hijab below their wigs in future call to bar ceremonies.
“Muslims cannot be fully integrated into all aspects of Nigerian life unless authorities make inclusiveness a cardinal principle in their policies, rules and regulations. We also commend all Islamic organisations that showed interest in the struggle to liberate the Nigerian Muslim woman from the shackles of neocolonialism as epitomized by the Amasa.
“In particular, we treasure the advice and diplomatic support by the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs under the leadership of the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III. We also commend Muslim youths who heeded our appeal for calm and therefore avoided public demonstrations over the Law school hijab imbroglio. Meanwhile, Judge Bone, a graduate of Birmingham University where she also completed her MA and PhD, said in an interview with Huffington Post; “My specialisms include Qur’anic exegesis and ethics with an emphasis on Shari’ah and gender.”
The former head-teacher and university chaplain sits on the panel of judges at the Sharia Council at Birmingham Central Mosque in UK – one of Europe’s biggest mosques. Her job includes to rule on Islamic divorce hearings – a role reserved for experienced elders who have spent their lives studying the Holy Qur’an.
The 45-yearold woman was invited to join the panel because of her expertise in the field of Islamic jurisprudence. “I’ve always been involved in my local community and I spent five years as a leader at a girls youth club, particularly working with Muslim girls.”
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