Hafsat Abiola-Costello adds her voice to the hijab debate stirred by Amasa Firdaus of the law school fame.
Firdaus famously refused to take off her hijab during law school graduation ceremony. It was a stance that would cost her a law school certificate.
Almost everyone has had a say on this raging religious controversy.
Abiola-Costello who is founder of the Kudirat Initiative for Democracy (KIND) salutes Firdaus for her courage and says her action was aimed at challenging the status quo.
Abiola's daughter also likens Firdaus to a lion.
Her Facebook post is reproduced below, unedited:
A law student passed all the requirements to be called to the bar but was not allowed to attend the ceremony because she refused to take off her hijab, which violates the rules of the Law School.
She knew of the rule but because she felt that it was unjust, she refused to comply. By so doing, she has chosen to challenge the status quo.
If she succeeds, the Law School will change the rule. If she fails, she would either have to comply in order to be called to the Bar in Nigeria or give up her dream of being a lawyer here.
I wish we would all be like Firdaus in pursuit of the world we want to live in. To stand up or take a knee and speak up against a practice or rule that we do not support. To be willing to challenge the prevailing practice, no matter the cost. After all, the problems we remain silent about are the ones we are condemned to live with.
As we think of what gifts to give each other during this Christmas season, let us gather stories of the courageous, the stories of the scared-but-acted-anyway to share at our tables. Let them inspire us to enter 2018 prepared to raise our voices about the issues we are concerned about; to push past complacency and complicity and demand change.
Well done, Firdaus. A lioness can only ever be the mother of cubs.