Malawi to allow Muslim women wear hijab on driving license photos

Officials from Department of the Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services (DRTSS)  have announced that  Muslim women in Malawi will no longer be required to take off their hijabs for their driving license pictures .

Woman wearing a Hijab

The move follows after  reports emerged about some Malawian women being forced to remove their hijabs to obtain their driving licenses and traffic registration identity cards.

Nyasa Times reported recently that two Muslim women — Beatrice Maulidi and Agness Kamoto — were recently forced by some officers at the traffic agency to remove their hijabs.

The two women through their lawyer Yusuf Witness Nthenda had  written a letter to Road Traffic  complaining t the conduct of officers at Road Traffic against Muslims wearing hijab.

But in  a statement issued on Wednesday made available to Nyasa Times, the country’s traffic authority said the decision  to lift ban on hijab for driving licenseswas made after “serious talks” were held with the Muslim Association of Malawi (MAM) and an agreement was reached on how to handle Muslim women at the authority’s offices nationwide.

“Muslim women may not be required to remove the head gear entirely but they should at least expose necessary facial features for facial recognition,” the statement said.

According to Road Traffic (Driving Licences) Regulations of 2000 law, every applicant’s photograph must depict the head and shoulders, without any head covering.

“It is in this respect that clients who wish to have their images captured at DRTSS offices were requested to remove their head gear in order for the [traffic information] system to capture the necessary features for facial recognition,” the statement added.

The measures to remove the hijab had angered the Muslim community who said it violated human rights and a woman’s freedom to choose what to wear.

Spokesperson for Muslims Association of Malawi  (MAM) Sheikh Dinala Chabulika said what is important is not to remove the head gear.

“While respecting that the Road Traffic Directorate has recently issued licenses to Muslim women with the head gear, can the road traffic directorate issue a license to women with artificial hair?” said Chabulika.

Meanwhile, MAM chairperson Alhaji Twaibu Lawe has  welcomed the move, saying his organization had worked hard to reach an agreement with the traffic authority.

The DTRSS is the regulatory arm of Malawi’s Ministry of Transport and Public Works and is the sole agency that issues motor vehicle and driver’s licenses.

 

 

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26 thoughts on “Malawi to allow Muslim women wear hijab on driving license photos”

  1. married nurse says:

    Ndi Ku Malawi kunotu mukuti fwe fwe mupite kwa cha eni akeyo azimai sawothela anta zonse amamvela baba I hate this religion for one reason….it’s anti women

  2. Osman Zuxy says:

    Sometimes it’s better to keep quite… Mukuti komwe anachokera? Christianity inachokera kuti if I may ask? Don’t just mix speculations out paranoia… M’malawi we got about 30-35 ℅ Muslims iwe ukubwera pano with ur monkey trick’s.. Isis ain’t Islamic group, time will come you shall know the truth.. Show me in Quran pomwe analemba kuti Muhammad (SWA)slaughtered someone? Anyway we ain’t debating hea ndipo sndikuona kuti Anthu a Paul muntha kutiwina us who believes in the teachings of Prophet Issah’s (Jesus) peace be upon him… Join them if u can’t beat them,, Female muslims kwa America the home of anti-islamic belief, akuloredwa kuvala ma hijab while even playing Netball, wakwiya ndimfiti chakura pa Nyasa nditsamkhu komaso kusazindikira kusiyana zipembedzo kusatipatule ..ikakhala khondo yakwaluya nde ndiakale okhwilizira ake ndazigogo anu akwa American omwe akumathandiza Israel to destroy innocent people of Palestine. Anyway ndangodusa sizonyozona we are matured stop regarding urself superior to others , zichepesen Allah (God) will elevate you..

  3. mbani says:

    tisaone nkhope abandulidwabe kuumila bwanji one license for all. mzeru za bakili in dpp zoyipa look how beautiful annie and shanil are.

  4. naphili says:

    True muslim women do not even drive cars!! Go to Saudi Arabia! Za zii!

  5. mangochi says:

    Dinala Chabulika are you a real Sheik? Here it says “to allow for some facial features” and you are advocating for “artificial hair”. It is normal that the driver should be recognized and artificial hair cannot hinder recognition. If you have no comments keep quiet and you will still be recognized. Do not start a stupid argument just to be heard. I have no respect for this Dinala thing. You are a bore man!!

  6. mtete says:

    Much Ado About Nothing really

  7. Believer says:

    You who call yourselves Muslims may I ask you to read Quran Chap. 94:10 and tell me what it says. Which says “IF YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND OR HAVE ANY DOUBT OF WHAT’S WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK (QURAN) GO AND READ THE BIBLE OR ASK THOSE WHO READ THE BIBLE, THE TRUTH IS ALREADY REVEALED IN THAT (THE BIBLE)

    And may you tell me why in Quran, the name of Muhammad is written in 4 places but the name of Jesus is found in 25 places. Why would Quran give more reference to Jesus than Muhammad?

    And why is it that in Quran there’s only one female name “Mariam” mother of Jesus?

    And may you tell me why Quran has it’s 3rd Chapter as “Family of Mariam” and Chapter 19 is “Mariam”?

    And may you read Quran Chap. 3:45-55. There are 10 points there which Quran makes about Jesus, first is “KALIMA TURA” meaning ” THE WORD OF GOD” and the second thing is “LIKO TURA” which means “SPIRIT OF GOD”AND the third is “ISSA MASID” which means “JESUS CHRIST”

    Just to mention a few

  8. che nnungu says:

    Signs of perennial corruption in MALAWI. this is not true. In the end you will see these accepted on passport photos. You should weigh the consequences before looking at the advantages. Mavoti simungawine ndi zinthu zoopysa ngati zimenezi. Who makes such doggy polices. Zonvetsa chisoni kwambiri. No where in the civilised world will you see this.

  9. che nnungu says:

    Some decisions are made by mad people. In the end we will allow them too on Passport pictures. Cant you see the risks? Galu wina wadyaponso ndalama apa. Cry my beloved MALAWI

  10. Thyolo Thava says:

    Pleasing UDF and Atupele for mavoti ……………….hmmmmmm desperate DPP

  11. san says:

    Whoever calls himself Thako la nkhuku is somebody who should feel sorry for himself always, There was and there is no man who had ever succeeded in despising Islam, Some tried but ended in God’s wrath. Where did you come from yourself? Please take care when commenting on these issues others will not take lying down. MINE IS JUST A TIP.

  12. Thako la Nkhuku says:

    Ehhh! “Ignorance will kill you, ignorance will kill you” what? All you know is kill basi?

    You are the one who is ignorant! The law in its current form does not allow wearing of hijab pojambula photo ya ya pa licence. So what these ignorant cousins of your are insisting on is breaking the law.

    1. che nnungu says:

      In the end they will allow it on passports too. Signs of corruption

  13. bwana wankulu says:

    all those who have a prblem with hijab are gays

  14. Thyolo Thava says:

    Rubbish

  15. Tt says:

    If you are really muslim and you love your faith so much that you are willing to make such a stupid claim , why do you stay in a christian dominated country? A country where u are sound by Christian infidel swines? Why don’t u just go to Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan, where u will be able to practice your faith to the fullest! Muslim hypocrites?

  16. Banda says:

    Covering a women`s face is oppressive. Such backward religious beliefs should not be tolerated.

  17. igama lami says:

    Unless the relevant law is reviewed,this decision is tantamount to be illegal. The law should be reviewed first not this so called discussions

  18. Lupyu says:

    Muslim women are very lucky in Malawi that they are driving cars. Let them go to Saudi Arabia. They won’t enjoy that right.

  19. Thodi says:

    These are SADC licence so beware of problems with police in other countries

  20. @ Thako la Nkhuku, ignorance will kill you, you don’t know what Islam is, go google my friend and learn more about Islam, don’t choose ignorance and let it lead you, I pray for you that one day become a Muslim and start using your name on public domain without hiding it, you hide your name because your in darkness.

    1. Clive says:

      Thako la Nkhuku is not ignorant. Why should he call a panga knife a spade? Muslems are narcissistic attention seeking brats who will stop at nothing to use brute force and blow themselves up only to prove their stand point. Its not a religion of peace. Muhammad was such a warmongering peadophile who slaughter many.

    2. Believer says:

      May I ask you to read Quran Chap. 94:10 and tell me what it says.

      And may you tell me why in Quran, the name of Muhammad is written in 4 places but the name of Jesus is found in 25 places. Why would Quran give more reference to Jesus than Muhammad?

      And why is it that in Quran there’s only one female name “Mariam” mother of Jesus?

      And may you tell me why Quran has it’s 3rd Chapter as “Family of Mariam” and Chapter 19 is “Mariam”?

      And may you read Quran Chap. 3:45-55. There are 10 points there which Quran makes about Jesus, first is “KALIMA TURA” meaning ” THE WORD OF GOD” and the second thing is “LIKO TURA” which means “SPIRIT OF GOD”AND the third is “ISSA MASID” which means “JESUS CHRIST”

  21. Well done MAM and Yussuf Nthenda for the effort, it’s really a good development. However let me correct the writer of this article Zawadi Chilunga, the chairperson of Muslim Association of Malawi is Sheikh Muhammad Idrissah and NOT Alhaj Lawe, Alhaj Lawe is Secretary General of MAM. Thanks.

  22. Thako la Nkhuku says:

    Why is the DRTSS violating the law to accommodate these Al-Shabab, bomb-detonating, ISIS and Al-Qaeda offsprings?

    If they dont want to remove the hijab dont give them driving licences.

    After all, whey they come from women are not allowed to drive cars!!!

    1. Ineyo says:

      Where did they come from,and where did you come from?

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