-Following submission of Islamic bills
Bomi County Senator Edwin Melvin Snowe following the submission of his three controversial religious bills before the Liberian Senate for passage, has narrowly left the country for Nigeria.On Tuesday, 25 May, the agenda of the Liberian Senate carried the three controversial bills seeking legislations of two Islamic holidays as national holidays in Liberia, which including the end of Ramadan and Abraham Day.
Snowe recently submitted three bills before the Senate, one of which is seeking the legislation of Easter Monday as national holiday in Liberia.But following the submission of the religious bills, Mr. Snowe took a long trip to Nigeria.Since Snowe submitted these bills to the plenary of the Liberian Senate last week, the public has been divided for or against the instruments.
The proposed Acts include an Act Making Easter Monday a public holiday; an Act Making Eid al-Adha (Abraham’s Day) a public holiday; and an Act Making Eid al-Fitr (End of the Holy Month of Ramadan, the Festival of Breaking Fast) a public holiday.
In recent years, Muslims in Liberia have been advocating for the legislation of Eid al-Adha (Abraham’s Day) and Eid al-Fitr (End of the Holy Month of Ramadan, the Festival of Breaking Fast) as national holidays.
In 2020, a group under the banner, the Movement for Islamic Holidays in Liberia called on the Liberian Legislature to pass into law two major Islamic festivals – Eid al-Fitr, known as Ramadan Day and Eid al-Adha also called Abraham day as national holidays.
This is not the first time Senator Snowe has submitted bills for Islamic holidays. He first submitted similar bills ahead of representatives and presidential elections in 2017. At that time he submitted to the House of Representatives another bill to the body dubbed “An Act to Create Eid al Adha,” otherwise known as Abraham Day, as a national holiday.
As Representative, then, Snowe had argued that the Act if passed into law will enable Muslims across Liberia to commemorate Eid al-Adha peacefully.Muslims believe that Eid al-Adha is the day Prophet Abraham expressed his willingness to sacrifice his son, Ishmael as an act of submission to God’s command.
Liberians are arguing that there are already many national holidays that which have some negative impact on the economy here. In addition to these numerous national holidays, government offices here do not function on Saturdays.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor–Edited by Winston W. Parley