Somali-Born Supermodel Celebrates Hijab In ‘Modest’ Fashion Show

Fashion Model, Halima Aden

Supermodel Halima Aden was the highlight of a “modest” fashion show held in London on the weekend.

Aden, the first supermodel in a hijab who has walked the catwalk in New York and Milan fashion weeks in the head covering, has been billed as one of the top fashion finds of the year.

Seven designers from Oman, Morocco, Britain, and Indonesia showcased their collection, with an eye on the lucrative “modest” wear – fashionable clothes that cover most of the body.

“The collection that we have presented at the Modest Fashion Show is a collection of Moroccan kaftans which are in fashion, relevant to this modern age, relevant to the new trends in attendance. I worked with transparent fabrics and it was all handmade,” said Moroccan designer, Meryem Boussikouk.

A former refugee, Aden made headlines as the first hijab- and burkini-sporting contestant to take part in the Miss Minnesota USA pageant. The bold move catapulted her career to new heights involving many “firsts”, including being the first hijabi signed by a major modelling agency.

Aden said her Islamic faith was compatible with being a fashion model.

“Muslim women love fashion. If you go to the streets of Dubai, it would not be uncommon to see a Chanel bag associated with a hijab. So it’s just a matter of now incorporating Muslim women on the catwalks,” said the 20-year-old supermodel.

Aden, born in Kakuma, a United Nations refugee camp in Kenya, came to the United States at age 7 with her family, initially settling in St. Louis.

She said she hasn’t forgotten her roots.

“I always talk about my upbringing and of course, it was difficult. But now I am at a position where I am privileged enough to work with UNICEF and try to bring change to kids who have experienced some of the things that I have,” she said.

Among the guests was Mariah Idrissi who became the first model to a model for clothing brand H&M. She said models in hijab sent out a positive message about Muslims like herself.

“I think it’s so powerful because through entertainment, through fashion, these are really subtle ways of obviously promoting, not just the fashion side but people as well, so whoever has these misinterpretations of what Islam represents, if there are role models who are out there, who happen to wear hijab, it just makes things a lot easier for us,” said Idrissi.

Members of the audience also praised the show.

In the past two years, the hijab has gone mainstream with advertisers, media giants and fashion firms promoting images of the traditional headscarf in ever more ways.


German parliament approves partial ban on full-face veil

Germany’s lower house of parliament agreed to a draft law on Thursday which introduced a raft of security measures including a partial ban on civil servants, judges and soldiers in Germany from wearing full-face veils at work.

The move comes after Chancellor Angela Merkel called in December for a ban on full-face Muslim veils “wherever legally possible”.

There are five months to go before a federal election, and her conservatives lost some support to the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany during the migrant crisis.

More than a million migrants, many of them Muslims from the Middle East, have arrived in Germany over the last two years, and concerns about integration are widespread.

German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere told the parliament deputies that the draft law is to make an important contribution to clear communication of values and the limits of tolerance to other cultures.

“The draft law, of course, complies with all the requirements of the Federal Constitutional Court’s judgement, but further strengthens the tasks,” he told the German parliament on Thursday.

De Maiziere also underlined that the new draft law would pave the way for a modern police IT infrastructure.

“The new system makes it possible to gather and merge people- and event-related data, and to better understand connections. Which is better for our security, more effective for the police, and at the same time it does not mean less data-protection,” he said.

In February, the southern state of Bavaria, ruled by the Christian Social Union – the Bavarian sister party to Merkel’s conservatives – said it would ban the full-face veil in schools, universities, government workplaces and polling stations.


Pope Francis Preaches Peaceful Coexistence Among Osun Residents

Pope FrancisPope Francis has called for peaceful coexistence among Nigerians, particularly residents of Osun State, irrespective of the socio-cultural and religious beliefs.

The Pope made the appeal during a visit of the Roman Catholic Church to Governor Rauf Aregbesola at the Government House in Osogbo, the state capital.

The Catholic Pontif, who was represented by Most Reverend Augustine Kassujja, said that dialogue instead of violence should be ensued in resolving issues of disagreement between people of diverse culture, tradition, religion and beliefs.

While welcoming the Catholic leadership to the state, the Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola, expressed the commitment of the state government to working with all religious representations in promoting peaceful coexistence in the state.

He added that the virtues of tolerance, compassion, love and accommodation must be imbibed by adherents of different religions.

PICTURES: Drama In Osun School As Students Appear In Church Garments

Osun-students-garments-hijabSome students of Baptist High School, Adeeke, Iwo town in Osun State, caused a stir among their colleagues as they appeared in school in choir robes and other church garments.

This is a fallout of the decision by the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Osun State chapter to allow the Christian students exercise their fundamental human rights following the judgement of the Osun State High Court upholding the use of hijab for willing female students across public schools in the state.


Channels Television correspondent who visited the school observed that the students came late to the school around 8:35AM and headed to their various classes as their colleagues hailed their courage.Osun-students-garments-hijab-classroom

Many female Muslim students of the school also wore hijab on their uniforms and some members of the Christian Association of Nigeria were in the school to monitor the reaction of the teachers to their students’ mode of dressing.

No student was sent out of the class for appearing in different clothes

No student was sent out of the class for appearing in different clothes as all the students, irrespective of their chosen uniforms sat attentively as the teachers did their job.

The Principal of Baptist High school, Iwo Osun State, Omotayo Arowolo, refused to grant an interview, but noted that there was no crisis in the school and the teachers were on duty teaching the students as usual without distraction.

Court Approves Hijab For Public Schools In Osun

educationAn Osun State High Court has ruled that female Muslim students can now wear hijab in all public primary and secondary schools in the state.

Delivering the judgement on Friday in Osogbo, the state’s capital, Justice Jide Falola ruled that the use of hijab by female Muslims was their fundamental human right to freedom of religion, conscience and thought.

He held that no female student must be molested or sent out of school for wearing hijab.

Justice Falola declared that since all missionary schools had been taken over by government in 1975, all students have equal rights to practice their religions.

However, he noted that such hijab must match the color of their school uniforms.

Counsels to the state’s Muslim Community and Christian Association of Nigeria, Kozeem Odedeji and Femi Ayandokun, expressed different opinions to the judgement.

The case was instituted in February 2013 by the Osun State Muslim Community and the Muslim Students Society of Nigeria.

Ban On Hijab To Promote Unity And Orderliness – Ipaye

Legal yearThe Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Rahman Ade Ipaye has applauded the judgment of the Ikeja High Court to uphold the ban of hijabs in primary and secondary schools in the state.

Justice Modupe Onyeabo had on Friday, October 17, 2014, dismissed and ruled against the Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN) suit against the Lagos State Government, saying such practice would affect the secular nature of state.

Ipaye said that the Lagos State Government is in the forefront of human rights promotion in Nigeria and would not deny its citizens their religious rights.

The Lagos AG, however, observed that no right was absolute and, sometimes, public interest would justify some limitations, adding that uniforms are adopted for school children at the formative stages to encourage a sense of unity, discipline, organization and orderliness.

“We do not want school children at this age to relate on the basis of obvious religious or social classification, hence the adoption of the uniform”, he briefed.

In a statement signed by the Pro Justice, Bola Akingbade, Ipaye noted that once deviations are allowed, conscious or unconscious group affiliations would crop up and this would promote prejudices, limit interactions and weaken the sense of unity among students of the same school.

“With uniforms, students, teachers and other staff are less likely to focus on dressing or appearance as a means of determining status, religion or other socio-cultural affiliations. Every student is equal and students are not able to tease or bully each other about the style, color or quality of their clothing or their religious, social or cultural background”, he noted.

He said uniformity would also encourage focus on school work and reduce social anxiety or animosity among students while enhancing confidence and sense of belonging all around.

Ipaye, said that the State Government’s decision to refuse variations to the uniforms prescribed for use in her primary and secondary schools was not an easy one, noting that the position was reached after extensive deliberations and consultations.

In his words, “We need first to define the limits of this policy, as it is not as extensive as some portray it to be. It is only applicable in Government owned Primary and Secondary Schools where encouragement of free interaction among children from all social and religious backgrounds are a matter of State Policy. Above the secondary school level, adult students can wear whatever they like, subject only to the dictates of their particular vocation or profession.”

Even in the primary and secondary schools, Ipaye said, interested female Muslim students will be allowed to wear their hijab during Islamic Religious Knowledge classes and for afternoon or Jumat prayers.

He posited that once deviations or variations are allowed for one group, Government would have no basis for refusing it to any other social or religious group, and that will be the end of the uniform in our public primary and secondary schools.

“Once any deviation is allowed for any reason, religious, cultural or personal, there will of course be no reason for disallowing another which may be requested on similar bases,” Ipaye explained.

In her ruling, Justice Onyeabor said that Section 10 of the Constitution made Nigeria a secular state and that government must maintain neutrality at all times and that the government therefore had a duty to preserve the secular nature of the institutions concerned.

She noted that since the public schools were being funded by the government, it was therefore competent to issue dress codes and other guidelines to the students.

Soldier Loses Life In Foiled Gombe Suicide Bombing

Chris-OlukoladeTroops mounting a security checkpoint at a Barrack entrance in Gombe this morning intercepted a lady suicide bomber while she was attempting to gain entry into the barracks, a statement by the Director, Defence Information, Major General Chris Olukolade said on Monday

“The lady suicide bomber who had primed herself with improvised explosive devices concealed under her Hijab was intercepted when troops acting on intelligence report indicating that a terrorist group was plotting to attack Barracks around Gombe using female suicide bombers, halted her and as she was being searched the bomb detonated killing the lady.

“Unfortunately one of the troops conducting the search also died while another was wounded in the explosion.

“Normal activities have since resumed in the barracks” Olukolade assured.