Surely nobody at the joint session really believed Mr Erdogan’s warning about the threat the so called Gullen Network presents Pakistan. No doubt the Turkish president really believes the Network – which ran schools here till just before his visit – is just as dangerous for Pakistan as al Qaeda, etc.
“I know I can’t do anything to persuade the federal government to take back its decision of expelling the Turkish teachers and their families from the country,” a senior Pakistani teacher told PTI. “I must say last Friday was the saddest day in our campus in Lahore as all Turkish students were literally crying,” she said.
Slamming the government’s decision of deporting Turkish teachers and staff from the country, parents said “Pak-Turk Schools were founded without any financial assistance of Turkey and Pakistani government but founded by the philanthropist donations of people of Pakistan and Turkey” adding that these schools were the property of Pakistani people.
Around 400 Turks living in Pakistan have been ordered by the Pakistani government to leave in next three days. Isn’t it deplorable that the government has to do so only to bring a radiant smile on Erdogan’s face? Is Erdogan’s smile worth more than the tears of Pak-Turk students?
In sharp contrast to Boko Haram, there is a faith-inspired group, a civil society movement that engages in education, dialogue and charitable activities and has grown out of Muslim grass roots. Check out how disturbed Boko Haram is about Hizmet’s education campaign, which offers opportunities for both boys and girls. Check out how ISIL publications outline exactly how they hate the Hizmet movement’s efforts and why they see Hizmet as their “enemies.”
In Pakistan, where more than 27 million children remain out of school, every teacher and educational institution matters. The Turkish non-governmental schools in question are ranked among the best in terms of in infrastructure, as well as quality of education and character-building.
The Pak-Turk school network students and their parents’ protested against the likely closure of the educational set-up following the two-day state visit by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the federal government’s decision to deport teachers affiliated with Pak-Turk International Schools and Colleges.
Authorities have ordered teachers with alleged links to Turkish cleric Gulen to leave the country as Turkey’s President Erdogan visits Pakistan. Experts say the move is aimed at appeasing Ankara. Pakistani liberal activists say Islamabad should not encourage Erdogan by obliging his government’s unlawful and authoritarian demands. Promotion of secular and democratic values is the only way forward, they say.
“PakTurk International Schools and Colleges are deeply concerned over the abrupt decision of the Government requiring the Turkish teachers, management and their family members numbering to approximately 450 individuals including the school-going children, infants and ladies to leave the country within three days – an extraordinary time constraint – in consequence of non-approval of their requests for extension of visa.
Maarif, the foundation that Pak-Turk schools to be transferred to, was set up by Turkish parliament and is an education foundation based on divisive political ideology and racism. It is founded by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) of Turkey to consign AKP’s partisan mentality and political ideology to Islamic and developing countries.
Turkish engagement with Southern Africa will not be without challenges. The success of this engagement will depend on the Turkish attitude towards the Hizmet Movement. If Turkey decides to tackle the Hizmet Movement head on as it has done in Turkey and in other countries, it will risk alienation in South Africa and the wider region. The Hizmet Movement is generally popular in Southern Africa, with long standing ties to civil society and the political elite.
Mrs. Osuji said Hizmet Movement schools, otherwise known as Turkish schools, are contributing to the development of education in Nigeria and other African countries. She urged African governments to resist any plot by the Turkish government to undermine their sovereignties and respectability by accepting its disguised order to hand over the Turkish schools to Maarif Foundation.
The mass sacking of more than 1,200 academics in Turkey has been compared to tactics used in Nazi Germany. Jean Asselborn, Luxembourg’s foreign minister, made his comments shortly after Turkish authorities released a list of 1,273 academics fired from public universities on 29 October.