The appointment of a Muslim woman to the post of deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria has ruffled feathers among some conservative Muslims, who have accused her of dressing “immodestly”.
Aisha Ahmad, 40, is from Nigeria’s northern Niger state, an area where girls are often poorly educated in comparison with the south of the country, and where opportunities for women in business can be limited.
After news of her appointment filtered out, the discussion turned from her impressive qualifications – to her wardrobe.
Some clerics with big online followings quoted the Koran and insisted that women should dress “decently” – the photos they object to show her in a dress, with her hair uncovered.
But Nigerian writer Gimba Kakanda told the BBC the critics went too far as the north of the country had more serious problems to address.
“It’s embarrassing that we are actually debating the body and dress of a woman, with over 10 million of our children out of school,” he said.