The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has thanked the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for finding a solution to one of the issues raised by the human rights organization.
It will be recalled that MURIC in a press statement dated 6th August, 2019 entitled ‘NDLEA 2019 Promotion Exam is Anti-Muslim’ had berated NDLEA for fixing its 2019 promotion examination between 15th and 21st August 2019 thereby making it impossible for Muslim officers who are currently on hajj to participate.
In an apparent reaction to the concern raised by MURIC, NDLEA announced via a memo dated 13th August, 2019, reference NDLEA/FIN/88/VOL. VII/227 that ‘Candidates of all examinations slated for 15th – 21st shall be given the opportunity to write a make-up exam at a date to be communicated’.
The memo specifically identified ‘personnel granted permission/approval to travel for 2019 hajj’ as the first of the four categories of staff who will enjoy the make-up examination opportunity.
In a press statement issued by the Director of MURIC, Professor Ishaq Akintola, the organisation appreciated the management of NDLEA for addressing one of the two concerns raised by it.
“We appreciate NDLEA for taking prompt action on the issue of Muslim staff who would have missed the promotion examination had the makeup examination window not been offered. We thank NDLEA for this.
“We must be honest with ourselves. Nigeria will be a better place if all government agencies and ministries address genuine complaints of citizens. Most religious and ethnic conflicts would also have been nipped in the bud. While it is the duty of MURIC as a human rights group to complain when there is injustice, the organisation will not hesitate to express gratitude when such an issue is addressed. In addition, we will always leave the door of dialogue open.
“In this respect, we remind NDLEA management that we still have a pending request, namely, the issue of clash on the promotion examination timetable between one of the subjects, DDR (Drug Demand Reduction) and Jumu’ah prayer. DDR is scheduled for 1130 to 1330 hours (i.e. 11.30 am to 1.30 pm) on Friday 16th August, 2019. This clash was the subject of our second press statement on NDLEA dated 9th August, 2019 under the caption, ‘NDLEA’s Promotion Exam Clashes With Jumu‘ah Prayer’.
“We seek the management’s wise intervention on this clash. It is oppressive, traumatizing and dehumanizing for Muslims to sit for an examination when they should be in the mosque praying. Man is body, soul and spirit. Muslims may not be able to fully concentrate on such an examination thereby putting them at a disadvantage. We urge NDLEA not to allow such a blemish in its records because it will go into the archives as an act of religious intolerance on the part of NDLEA management once it is allowed. The timetable can still be adjusted even at the last minute.
“As we take a break, we reaffirm our deep appreciation of NDLEA’s offer of makeup examination for Muslim staffers who are still in Saudi Arabia. Nonetheless, we reiterate our complaint over the clash between another examination paper (DDR) slated for the Jumu‘ah period (11.30 am – 1.30 pm) on Friday 16th August, 2019. We appeal for a review of the timetable to avoid this clash in the interest of justice, fairplay, religious tolerance and peaceful coexistence”, MURIC stated in the statement.