A young Muslim lady posted to the Social Security and National Insurance Trust(SSNIT) to do her national service has alleged that she has been sacked for wearing a Muslim headscarf, or hijab, at work.
The victim, Rabiatu Mohammed, narrating her story explained that she reported on September 1, 2019, to the Tarkwa branch of SSNIT where she had been posted but was asked by the HR Manager to remove her hijab upon arrival or pursue her national service elsewhere.
This comes after a Muslim group calling itself, Muyad Social Services, (MSS) petitioned the SSNIT over complaints from the national service personnel.
The group in its petition, dated September 16, 2019, and signed by the Executive Director, Adnan Adams Mohammed, said: “According to one of the affected national service persons, Miss Rabiatu Mohammed, she was denied the opportunity to undertake her mandatory national service because she was requested by your officials to choose between undertaking her national service at SSNIT without her hijab or undertaking her national service elsewhere if she insists on wearing her hijab.
“We see this act as an affront to Article 21(1) (c) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, which allows every citizen to observe and manifest their religion in the country. We do not want to believe that SSNIT bans all forms of religious expressions, including prayer at management and board meetings at its offices.”
They are demanding a positive response to the petition and an outline of a positive course of actions to put in measures to prevent any discriminatory acts.
Below is the full petition:
MUYAD SOCIAL SERVICES PETITION SSNIT OVER CONSTITUTIONAL AND HUMAN RIGHT ABUSE AGAINST SOME MUSLIM LADIES
The MUYAD Social Services (MSS), upon receiving complaints from some Muslims ladies posted to do their National Service with the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) but were denied access to do their mandatory national service because they refused to remove their hijab (hair cover – an obligatory Islamic identity of Muslim ladies), have petitioned the Trust through the Director-General and the Board Chairman.
MUYAD Social Service (an Islamic NGO) is very disturbed with the deliberately flouting of the fundamental human and constitutional rights of Muslim ladies who wear their hijabs by both public and private institutions (educational institutions and workplaces) in the country.
MSS is disturbed with the high tendencies of some Ghanaians deliberately breaking Article 21(1)(c) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, which allows every citizen to observe and manifest his or her religious belief and norms to the fullest everywhere in the country.
MSS is, therefore, demanding a positive response to the petition served SSNIT on Friday, September 13, 2019, at about 3:55pm and an outline of a positive course of actions to remedy the damage and disregard of the rights of the Muslim ladies within the Trust sooner.
Unsatisfactory response or any course of actions will motivate the MSS to seek redress from the law court of Ghana.
MSS also take this opportunity to advise all institutions in Ghana both public and private to respect the constitutional rights of every citizen in the country, especially the religious belief and norms and permitted by the Supreme Laws of the land. No bye-laws, professional code of ethics, institutional rules or codes, service code is above the Constitution of Ghana.
The peace of the country is expensive than any individual’s or institution’s self-interest and deliberate disregard to the laws of the country.
Islam highly upholds peace and respect of laws of every country the reason why MUYAD Social Services has kept on encouraging Muslims to use lawful means to address their grievances and abuse of their rights.
Signed: Adnan Adams Mohammed,
Executive Director, MUYAD Social Services