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In Northern Nigeria, Riding Too Close for Comfort Religious Law Is Extended in Islamic State of Kano to Segregate Public Buses and Taxis by Sex
For women, commuting across this ancient Islamic city has long been as easy as hopping into a minibus or climbing on the back of a motorcycle taxi. Both are cheap and readily available. Even if some female passengers found it unsettling to be so near strange men, who might make lewd comments or press their bodies close, such was the price of efficient transport.
But the days of casual travel are ending for the women of Kano, a bustling trading center of about 500,000 in northern Nigeria. Government officials, determined to halt what they see as the decline of public morality, are banning women from all but a handful of Kano’s motorcycle taxis and are requiring them to sit in the back of public minibuses.
It is the next logical step, officials said, in their effort to bring the strict Islamic legal code, or sharia , to Kano, which is in one of 12 states in northern Nigeria where Islamic law holds sway to varying degrees. The remaining 24 states, and the federal capital, Abuja, have a mix of religions and are governed by secular laws………………………….

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/20 05/08/22/AR2005082201218_pf.html

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