The Education Minister of Canada’s Quebec province, Jean-Francois Roberge, was called out for “shameful hypocrisy” after he tweeted a picture of himself with Nobel Prize-winning human rights activist Malala Yousafzai.
Netizens started criticising him, highlighting the Minister’s act as hypocrisy since it is not even more than two weeks when his Coalition Avenir Quebec (CAQ) government adopted a law that bans public sector employees from wearing religious symbols at work. These employees could be in any positions of authority that includes teachers, police officers and judges.
Roberge and Malala met in France, where they discussed “access to education and international development.”
— Jean-F. Roberge (@jfrobergeQc) July 5, 2019
The caption read in French which means: “Nice meeting with Malala Yousafzai, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, to discuss access to education and international development.”
It was also pointed out by Twitterati that Yousafzai wouldn’t be legally permitted to teach in Quebec schools while wearing a headscarf under his government’s “Bill 21.”
“Did you tell her that in Quebec, women dressed like Malala do not have access to certain jobs in the public service? Thanks to your government,” one Twitter user said.
The Pakistani activist is the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize winner. At 15, she survived a Taliban attack. But instead of getting scared, she was strengthened by the attack.
“You hypocrite. You wouldn’t let her become a teacher here in Quebec – you can’t score points by posing with Malala,” said another user.
When asked Roberge defended his government’s policies saying, “I would certainly tell her it would be an immense honour and that in Quebec, as in France … as well as in other open and tolerant countries, teachers can’t wear religious signs while performing their duties.”
Malala’s never-ending battle has earned her an honorary Canadian citizenship. Currently, she is a citizen of England and promotes education among children, especially girls.