- Raffia Arshad, a lawyer, has set a new record after she was appointed as the first-ever hijab-wearing judge in the UK
- The Muslim woman said coming from a minority group was a big challenge as she feared she may never succeed
- Raffia vowed to use her position to promote voices of minorities and make them heard
PAY ATTENTION: Click “See First” under the “Following” tab to see Briefly.co.za News on your News Feed!
A Muslim woman, Raffia Arshad, has broken a big record in the UK after she became the first hijab-wearing judge in the country.
Briefly.co.za learned that the 40-year-old woman was appointed as the deputy district judge of the Midlands after a successful law career of 17 years.
“It’s definitely bigger than me, I know this is not about me. It’s important for all women, not just Muslim women, but it is particularly important for Muslim women,” she said.
READ ALSO: Government allows congregational worship on Level 3 lockdown
In one of her interviews after the appointment, she said that she was once scared that coming for a minority background and her upbringing would affect professional life.
Raffia said that she would use her position to make sure that everybody’s voice is heard no matter how diverse they are.
She said that she has been getting positive feedback, something she described as the best part of the appointment.
READ ALSO: Mbuyiseni Ndlozi on opening churches: "What about those with Covid-19?"
It should be noted that the new judge was called to bar in 2002 and became a part of the St Mary’s Family Law Chambers in 2004.
Some of the fields she has performed in are private law, children and female mutilation and Islamic law among others.
The judge said despite the experiences she has gathered, she sometimes gets mistaken in the law court as the interpreter or client.
Raffia said that in 2001, a family member advised her not to wear her hijab to a scholarship interview. She said that she went ahead and wore it because it is a part of who she is.
“Raffia has led the way for Muslim women to succeed in the law and at the Bar and has worked tirelessly to promote equality and diversity in the profession,” Vickie Hodges and Judy Claxton, heads of St Mary’s law firm said.
Enjoyed reading our story? Download BRIEFLY's news app on Google Play now and stay up-to-date with major South African news!