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Kano Hisbah to arrest parents of Shatu Garko for winning Miss Nigeria pageant

Ms Garko, 18, of Kano, recently emerged as the 44th Miss Nigeria — the first hijab adorning Muslims to win the national beauty pageant.

• December 22, 2021
Haruna Ibn Sina, Shatu Garko
A composite of Haruna Ibn Sina, and Shatu Garko used to illustrate the story

Kano State Hibah commander Haruna Ibn Sina says parents of Miss Nigeria winner Shatu Garko may be arrested and interrogated for allowing their daughter to participate in Miss Nigeria beauty pageant for 2021, describing it as “illegal” and contrary to Islamic beliefs.

Ms Garko, 18, of Kano, recently emerged as the 44th Miss Nigeria, the first hijab adorning Muslims to win the beauty pageant.

Reacting to Miss Garko’s victory in the beauty pageant in an interview with BBC Pidgin, Mr Haruna said participating in a pageant is “forbidden” for Muslims from Kano, a northern Nigerian state with strict Sharia practices.

Mr Ibn Sina said they had confirmed that Ms Garko’s parents are living in Kano and will soon be brought into custody and interrogated for the role their daughter played in the beauty contest, the BBC Pidgin reported on Wednesday morning.

Though Miss Garko participated in the pageant adorning her hijab, the Hisbah commander further condemned the exercise as a whole, saying it was against Quranic instruction.

Before now, Hisbah, which was adopted in many northern states in early 2000, had banned tailors, supermarkets and boutique owners from using mannequins to display clothes in the state.

In June, the religious police arrested 40 teenagers for selling condoms and Marijuana in Kano and also prohibited the sharing of pre-wedding photos of the daughter of Emir of Kano Zahrah Bayero, who married Yusuf Buhari, saying it is a sin.

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