The Ilorin Emirate Descendants Progressive Union (IEDPU) has condemned the proposed protest being orchestrated by some recalcitrant residents of Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, on the concluded matter of the use of hijab by interested female Muslim students in public schools in the State.
In a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Abubakar Imam, on behalf of the Union's National President, Alhaji Aliyu Otta Uthman, fsi, the IEDPU said that it was of the firm conviction that as an important stakeholder in the peaceful co-existence and progress of Kwara State, it must make its position on the planned protest very clear and unequivocal due to its potential to destabilise the stability and tranquillity of the entire state.
The Union described the proposed protest as a joke taken too far and an unnecessary display of ignorance laced with arrogance and ethnocentrism by those who are out to perpetuate tyranny and injustice. It urged those who are not comfortable with the position of the Kwara State Government to forward their grievances to the appropriate organs of government instead of resulting to illegality or self help,warning that any form of protest at this point in time could be hijacked by hoodlums and consequently turned into violence.
While appreciating the rights of anyone or group to express their grievances on any issue, the statement said that the people of Ilorin Emirate were very much unclear as to the necessity of the proposed protest despite the fact that the decision of the government on the matter was not at variance with common sense, the provision of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria and the universally applauded judgement of the Court of Appeal.
The Union called on the people and residents of the State to be wary of provocative actions and the attendant disruptions of peace and tranquillity of the State over what it called "a forgone issue", reminding those concerned that what was essential and expected of enlightened and responsible citizens was tolerance, cooperation and not a resort to anarchy or deviance of legitimate due rights of others.
The Union recalled the community's uncountable kind gestures,hospitality and several acts of cooperation as well as uncommon compromises granted those who have lived in their midst for several decades .
The IEDPU noted that the state government is currently tackling the security challenges brought about by the renewed skirmishes in some parts of the State, it therefore urged the Kwara State Government and the security agencies to ensure that no one or group is allowed to further threaten the fragile peace of the "State of Harmony" for selfish reasons.