A young lady, Zainab Alhassan, was disqualified from this year’s Ghana’s Most Beautiful (GMB) auditions because she refused to take off her Hijab.
The Hijab, as prescribed by Allah in the Holy Qur’an, requires (girls, women, wives, daughters) to cover all over their bodies. Constantly, Muslim girls and women have complained of being discriminated against at school, even at workplaces and being denied opportunities they often deserved. Zainab’s case is just one of them.
Zainab Alhassan decided to enter into the competition this year because she regarded it as “a good opportunity for anyone who wanted to make an impact in their community to sell themselves and open great doors of sponsorship for them in their future activities.”
She, therefore, wanted to tap into those privileges, too.
Little did she know that her Hijab would be a hindrance.
Recounting her experience via a Facebook post, she stated that she had exhibited her dexterity throughout the various stages of the audition until the issue of the Hijab came up.
According to Zainab, the judges disqualified her because she stated that she would, under no circumstance, remove her Hijab in the course of the competition.
“During the auditions, I did great; I didn’t flop for once, I didn’t shake or become super nervous. In fact, I was exuding confidence but it took a different turn when the issue of my hijab came up. I was asked why I wore it to the auditions. I explained. Again, I was asked if I will take it off in the course of the contest if I’m asked due to one activity or the other. I told them in this day and age, there’s really nothing that one cannot do in her hijab. Another question was asked that since I’m insisting I will not remove it, ‘Do you bath in your hijab’. As ridiculous as that question was, I still answered, ‘Oh, I was also asked how I make my hair, I told them I go to the salon, obviously’. In fact, about 40% of the questions asked were based on my hijab”.
“The time of reckoning came when they were to pick those moving on to the next stage. They mention your name and tell you your fate. I was the fourth to be called and I stepped forward and he said: ‘Zainab, you are very good but since you decided not to remove your hijab, there is nothing we can do’. I was devastated but I kept it cool. I am sure the girls there selected to move to the next stage were very good, no doubt; and I cannot tell if they did better than me, which is very possible. What I did not understand [is] why my hijab could be a hindering factor to my progress in the competition.
Will I keep losing opportunities because of my hijab? Most definitely, but will I ever take it off to please someone? Hell no. But we will fight, we will go all out for this struggle and we must win it. Our younger sisters and daughters must not and will not lose opportunities simply because they choose to wear the hijab, not as long as we leave in a secular and democratic society she said