VEILING IS NOT VEILING
True life stories of Muslimahs in face veil
STORY NINE [FOUR FRIENDS, TWO SISTERS, ONE NIQAB ONE GOAL]
Our feature guests for today are four friends and two sisters. These Niqabis could be featured separately but I just decided to feature them together because their stories are interwoven and they share many things in common.
Aisha Jumah and Lateefah Jumah are sisters who met with Khadijah Edalere and Munirat Olaleye in high school, Anwar-ul Islam girls high school Ahmadiyyah Lagos. The four of them have since strived both separately and in unison to become a better Muslimah.
Aisha and Lateefah were born three weeks apart, they hails from Ibadan in Oyo state. They were born and raised in Shomolu Lagos into the family of Alhaji Moshood Jimoh before their family relocated to Abule-Egba Lagos.
They attended many primary schools before graduating from little angels nursery and primary school after which they proceeded to Anwar-ul Islam girls high school where their path crossed with Munirat and Khadijah.
Munirat hails from Ogun state, she was also born in Lagos into the family of Alhaji Jimoh Aremu Olaleye. She attended some primary schools also before finally graduating from Mercy of God Nursery and Primary school. She firstly attended Abeokuta Girls Grammar School before moving over to Anwar-ul Islam girls high school.
Khadijah Edalere hails from Ogun State. She was born in Lagos into the family of Alhaji R.A Edalere. She attended Amje international nursery and primary school before proceeding to Anwar-ul Islam girls high school.
We can’t really tell one of these four friends stories without mentioning others. We can’t tell the Hijab stories of the Jumah sisters without mentioning the Olaleye and Ogundapo family.
While in high school, Aisha and Munirat became close friends. Munirat’s family is well known for attending Islamic vacation course and she has a sister who was already using Hijab as at then, (big sis Aminat Olaleye). Munirat too was using a small Hijab then so she actually initiated Aisha Jumah into the world of Hijab and Aisha being a very active person initiated people around her including friends and sisters.
The four of them participated actively in school and MSSN activities. Their set was known as a very active set as they engaged in passionate dawah and orientated the junior students about the consciousness of Islam.
Aisha Jumah has a very superb leadership trait and this earned her the post of both Amirah and head girl of their set. She used her position to bring a lot of Muslim students together and with the support of her friends, high success was recalled and before long, the number of Hijabi students in Anwar-ul Islam was on the increase coupled with the fact that hijab was allowed as a dress code in the school then.
Khadijah Edalere was into sports then [Table Tennis to be precise] she played with shorts and behaved somehow like a tomboy such that no one believed she could succumb. But when the wind of active dawah blew on her, she began to garb in Hijab too Alhamdulliah. No set before and after in Anwar-ul Islam girls high school could beat the success the set of Lateefah, Khadijah, Munirat and Aisha’s set recalled Alhamdulillah.
After high school, Lateefah and Aisha gained admission into the polytechnic Ibadan to study mass communication and Agric-science respectively. Khadijah was admitted into Moshood Abiola Polytechnic to study mass communication. While Munirat gained admission into LAUTECH at a later time to study Animal Production and Health. [She got admission late]
While in the polytechnic, first year, the passion and the zeal Aisha Jumah has for the observance of Allah’s injunctions increased and she adopted the face veil. The face veil came for Lateefah as part of a dress code for a Tahfiz school and since then she has never looked back. Their father had no objection and it was a smooth ride Alhamdulliah.
The Niqab had always been in the mind of Munirat and it was realized in 2010 slightly after she got married. She took her time because she didn’t know what her father’s reaction would be. Though the man supported his daughters in all their deen endeavors but he was indifferent about the issue of Niqab. He never wanted it and thought only Hijab is okay.
The Niqab for Khadijah came after marriage too and it was borne out of love and passion for the injunctions of Allah. Despite the fact that she was married and not under her parents, they frowned at her new dressing and never wanted to hear about it. And because she was really determined and really wanted to please Allah against pleasing her parents and with full support of her husband, her parents surrendered more so when she is thriving in her business and also has something to contribute to the family.
After their ND program, Lateefah and Khadijah had their Internship done at Ray power, the radio section of AIT. They were put in the news room but at different times.
Khadijah later went for her HND while Lateefah and Aisha met their heartthrob and got married. Then the two sisters later had B.ED in English Language and Integrated science respectively from National open university. Khadijah got married during her service year and one thing these three have in common is that they married brothers from OAU [If you’re not from OAU, you’re not a nice brother lolz,……… that was a joke]
Munirat married her heartthrob while in 200 level and this posed a challenge as none of her siblings married in school. They would have finished school and start working before marriage and hers seems so different. This added to her difficulty as most people believed she would not graduate. She went through a lot of hurdles which could have made her give up but she didn’t. She was resolute about succeeding because her family must not attribute her failure to the Niqab. Despite all this, her father didn’t stop supporting her financially and she really made him proud by graduating with a good CGPA despite having three kids before graduation.
The four friends continued to thrive even after marriage. Aisha Jumah learnt Fashion designing and she sows excellently. She was a homeschool guru who homeschooled her kids with both western and Quranic knowledge and they excelled well. Her family relocated to a new area and after looking around for a standard Islamic school to no avail, the need to establish a school was inspired to change the narratives of Muslim school around the community. And to offer something different and exceptional with a pocket friendly fee. Glowing minds academy was established and Aisha Jumah put her B.ED skills into use to pilot the ship of the school. Now the school has grown with more pupils who are morally, Islamically and academically excellent and buoyant. With Tahfiz and Arabic classes on point, the school is a prayer answered for people in the community.
Munirat Olaleye started the RELICS kiddies school Ogbomoso with her husband. According to her, they nursed the idea of establishing a school one day but definitely not when they started and of course not in Ogbomoso. They were aware of the huge capital to establish a school and it was only by the power of Allah that it was realized. They started out with almost nothing but the best of planners had it all destined and the school came into being. RELIC started in the same flat they lived and today, it is government approved with over 350 pupils and almost 60 staffs. She rose from the grass to become an employer of labour and presided over interviews to determine people’s fate Alhamdulillah. She proved people who thought with Niqab she would be useless wrong. How merciful is Allah, the best disposal of Affairs. RELIC school has been putting forth pupils into government college, navy school and CTY in Ibadan to mention few.
Khadijah Edalere is an entrepreneur who has gone for series of entrepreneurial trainings online. She sells her products with the market name ‘KDJ market place. She supplies goods to markets and bakeries. She sells varieties of daily needs, clothes, foot wears, beddings and a host of others. She’s an excellent entrepreneur who sells anything that’ll bring profit and she’s doing amazingly well. She also learnt fashion designing majoring in Hijabs and Khimar. She sows women wears as well and really good at what she does. She is a successful business woman who works from home Maa shaa Allah.
Lateefah Jumah is an indefatigable writer who writes under the pen name lajfingers. She also blogs and really passionate about inspiring people through the pen. She started out with writing in JSS class but because her knowledge of grammar wasn’t deep then, she stopped. She picked the pen back because the passion she has for writing never dwindled. She wrote her first story ‘Living in a different world’ when she was in ND 1. She gave brother Yaqub Ajani to edit and he did a great job. She also gave the story to some of her friends who read and applauded her for a good job well done, this motivated her and her passion increased. Then she was spurred into writing ‘The Incompatible’ in 2006 because of a circumstance she witnessed. In 2015, she got the story published into a book and that has been the only published book to her record. The book was well received and people found it inspiring Alhamdulillah. She has written many other stories afterwards which includes, ‘The sorrow behind my smile’ ‘Living in a different world, edited version. ‘My mate’ Waiting can be tiring’ Our love till Jannah’ My Crush’ ‘Beauty Brain and Character BBC’ the most recent one ‘Trials, Tears and Triumph Triple T’ and a host of other stories. Writing for her is like a second nature which gives her fulfillment and joy Alhamdulillah. She also tries her hands in buying and selling but writing seemed to be an irreplaceable passion for her.
The four friends are mothers to beautiful children who are doing well in both western and Islamic education. They have beautiful family life and one thing the trio of Aisha, Khadijah and Munirat also have in common is that their marriages have transitioned into polygyny, [Lateefah too should watch her back lolzs] And Alhamdulillah the three are living fine with their co-queens.
The four friends are also striving to seek for knowledge as knowledge is an essential tool in the practice of Islam. Aisha has memorized half of the quran, Munirat has memorized some Juzs likewise, Lateefah and Khadijah. The four attended Madrasah and also striving to continue as learning never stops.
Their advice for Muslimah in general and those facing difficulties as regards the Niqab is to be resolute and put their trust in the promise of their lord who will never fail them and also never put their family especially their parents away from their success story, like Munirat use to tell people “our parents love us and always want the best for us and the best to them is not to see us in veil especially in what they are used to know of veiling in their own days, when eleha are not attributed with success, rather, they either end up selling ogi or fufu, I remembered my step mom relating the story of “ipade di alaaira” where a munooqobah is not allowed to go out of her abode not even to see her relatives till she dies. These and more are the terrifying stories about veiling that our parents are used to which they definitely do not want for us. So, sisters let us be patient, prayerful and understand their fears, InshaAllah we will tell the success story together with them in harmony soonest.
May Allah bless these four, reward their efforts with Jannah and never disgrace them on the day when beauty and money would be of no help except good deeds.
May Allah continue to uphold their marriages and ease their affairs at all times.
Thank you for showing us that veiling is not failing and that the Niqab is neither a sign of backwardness nor ignorance nor mental incompetence.
Thank you Khadijah, Munirat and Aisha for sharing your beautiful stories with us, thank you Lateefah for compiling. May Allah bless you all.
Photo credit: Raihanah bint Abdul-hakeem. Jazakillahu khairan for your effort always.
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