A faith-based human rights organisation, Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), has demanded the declaration of the first day of the Islamic calendar (1st Muharram), as Hijrah holiday to justify the January 1, Gregorian holiday that is declared annually by the Federal Government of Nigeria (FG).
The Director of MURIC, Prof Ishaq Akintola, in a statement, said the January 1, holiday was a Christian colonial creation designed to dignify and rubber-cushion the pomp and pageantry of Christmas.
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“Therefore, only the recognition of the first day of the Islamic New Year can balance the equilibrium and ensure parity, justice and fair play.
“This is an aberration and a gross injustice because Nigerian Muslims have been demanding the declaration of the first day of the Islamic calendar as a holiday for more than 20 years to no avail. It simply means that FG under President Muhammadu Buhari is also supporting the Christianisation of Nigeria. It considers the first day of the Christian calendar as sacred while the first day of the Islamic calendar is regarded as unimportant.
“MURIC frowns at this lopsided arrangement. It is unfair, unjust and undemocratic. We demand an immediate review of FG’s holiday policy. We demand the declaration of the first day of the Islamic calendar as a holiday to justify the 1st January holiday that is declared annually by FG,” the statement read.