Minister Mtambo appeals for patience over hijab infrared tempers

As the battle against and for the wearing of hijabs in public schools rages on, the Minister of Civic Education and National Unity Timothy Pagonachi Mtambo has made an impassioned appeal for patience among Muslims who are protesting the decision by public schools to bar their children to attend school in hijab.

The Muslim communities in Machinga recently issued a 21-day ultimatum against Mpiri Catholic Parish, demanding that the church should vacate the ‘Muslim territory’ for denying female Muslim faith learners their right to education while putting on a hijab—a gear covering the head and the neck worn by Muslim women and girls in public places.

The communities, led by Yusuf Bwanali, described the restriction on hijabs in Christian schools—including Catholic—as “discriminatory and a disgrace” to them considering that they are a mainly Muslim community.

Mtambo: We need patience to resolve these matters

They vowed that they would use whatever means to force the church to vacate the area, especially if it failed to bow down to their demand.

“Islam is like a culture here. If they [Catholic Church] don’t want to respect that then they should leave our community,” said Bwanali.

But Mtambo assured the Muslim community on Tuesday that the quasi-religious body, the Public Affairs Committee (PAC), is making good progress towards addressing their grievances.

“PAC was tasked to handle this issue and as government, we have full confidence in the capacity of the Committee to address this just like they did on the billboard issue last year. We just need to give them time and support to enable them do their job professionally,” he said.

The minister said the government is saddened with the ultimatum the Muslim communities have issued against the Catholic Church, stressing that it runs counter to the spirit of national unity.

He said the ministry is in touch with the leadership of both Christianity and Islam in the Eastern Region in trying to find a lasting solution to their differences; hence, he appealed to the Muslim community to desist from taking the law into their hands.

“Let us wait until PAC finalizes its work. I wish to assure our Muslim brothers and sisters that we have not forgotten them, NO! We are working very hard to have this matter addressed once for all,” he said.

PAC publicity secretary Bishop Gilford Matonga said the committee will be finalizing its work soon.

Meanwhile, the Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM) General Secretary Father Henry Saindi has called for calm among the Catholic community as the Catholic Church in Malawi has referred the matter to PAC.

Previously, the communities attacked teachers and burnt some property in church-aided public schools for barring female Muslim faith learners from putting on a hijab—a gear covering the head and the neck worn by Muslim women and girls in public places.

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Bill
Bill
23 days ago

Really, people are just looking for things to be offended by. If this is all you have to complain about then you are very lucky. Get over yourselves.

Makanjira
Makanjira
23 days ago

Bambo Bwanali, Kodi kale lonse Zobvala hijab atsikana achiyawo zinali kuti? Chifukwa inuyo Si aslamu ayi, ndinu ayawo kapena nditi a Chawa kuti mumvetse. Aslamu Ali ku middle East. Komanso mufune musafune ngakhale makolo a makolo anuwo akudziwa, ankadziwa adzadziwabe mpaka kufikira chimaliziro chadziko lapansi kuti Malawi ndidziko la chikhristu osati chisilamu ayi. Ndipo silidzasinthanso kukhala LA chisilamu, ngakhale mutatuluka magazi. The only big blunder Malawians did was to put Bakili Muluzi into power that’s when all these nonsense started.

mtete
mtete
22 days ago
Reply to  Makanjira

Apart mwatsendela Bwana. Zoona zokhazokha mwanenazi. Zikomo.
Kungoti anthu ena kupusa kwanyanya.

Tuvitwana.
Tuvitwana.
23 days ago

Osangomanga School za Chisilamu bwanji? And if they do that, then they can do anything they want with those schools. Otherwise, it doesn’t make sense to demand things on OTHER PEOPLE’S PROPERTY.

Bob Akimu
Bob Akimu
23 days ago

Government schools can allow hijabs but not Christian schools that’s an abomination.If you go to Christian schools you should observe their doctrines .Islamic countries force non Muslim visitors to wear hijabs,The Islamic schools we have in Lilongwe, Blantyre,Zomba do not accept non Muslims to join their schools Muslims should encourage their donors to build schools along side mosques.

Chiothamisi
Chiothamisi
24 days ago

Kodi za hijab izi zidayambira pati m`Malawi muno.I was young and now am old, we never saw this in schools, does that mean there were no moslems that time?

nafundo zalo
nafundo zalo
24 days ago

vuto la asilamu ambili sadziwa kuti ci khristu ndi u silamu mu zipembedzozi ose amatsata za m bible zofanafana. a slamu amamutenga muhamadi ngati an isolated different being kha cani. ose ndi ana a abraham yakobe isaki ndi mother mary olo mu kolani alipo.
now a slamu ambili kolani amauzidwa mokhala ngati akuuzidwa zilapi. saambili ali ndi kolani mmanyumba mwa unlike a khristu.
so ingoyanjananipo apa. inu akuluakulu mukuyambisa cisokonezo kwa ana athu omwe ali asogoleli a mawa.
MWATANI LELO

Shocker
Shocker
24 days ago

But they dont wear hijab at market and other public places.

Kuduhunter
Kuduhunter
24 days ago

Don’t catholic women / nuns wear something similar called a Veil and Colf whereby muslims call it hijab
But when it comes to muslims then its an issue

mtete
mtete
22 days ago
Reply to  Kuduhunter

Tikukamba za kusukulu. That’s why some people fail exams; kuyankha zosagwilizana ndi funso. We are not saying wearing a hijab is wrong but imposing this in a school which is non Muslim is nothing else but mtopola,
kufuna zolongolola basi; typical of low level thinking. You don’t impose your wishes on a host.

Kasim
Kasim
24 days ago

I usually get surprised with our Muslim brothers. How do you force your conditions on other peoples property. The best was our Muslim brothers to build their own school and let everyone wear those hijabs. Nobody is a stranger in malawi. We are all malawians. You only like catholics when they are distributin freebies

Mzakwacha Nixon's
Mzakwacha Nixon's
23 days ago
Reply to  Kasim

Nosense,catholic built schools to the public,teachers are paid by the Government.As such,I don’t see any reason catholics to refuse muslim girls to wear hijabs…..let them take out their schools.
After all,catholics nuns wear Hijab…what’s what can be wrong to allow girls to put on Hijab.
Remove your schools go out from muslim community.kupembeza ziboliboli basi.
Regards,
Mzakwacha Nixon
KwaZulu NaTaL
DURBAN.
Rsa.
+27724922299
[email protected]

M'memo wa Tonse alliance mwagwera mchenga
M'memo wa Tonse alliance mwagwera mchenga
22 days ago

Mzakwacha Nixon’s you were good enough securing your unwise mind from the public 🤣🤣🤣

Let
Let
24 days ago

Ok let’s make it so. All Christians must close schools in Muslim districts basi. Aziphunzira madrasa

Mzakwacha Nixon's
Mzakwacha Nixon's
23 days ago
Reply to  Let

That’s good idea …I welcome it

M'memo wa Tonse alliance mwagwera mchenga
M'memo wa Tonse alliance mwagwera mchenga
22 days ago

See Mzakwacha how foolish you are quickly growing?

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