May it please your Lordship,
Bapa Pempetisyen, Encik Che Ariffin bin Che Mahmood, dan emaknya, Puan Nik Hasimah binti Nik Yahya hadir hari ini.
I will take 4½ minutes with my speech. I will submit 3 reasons why I believe the Petitioner possesses an excellent character and deserves to be called to the Bar. I have many more reasons but since calls are now something to be sped through instead of savoured, I will confine myself to 3 only. I will then end with a round of thanks to those important to the Petitioner.
Now to those reasons.
Reason 1: She is committed to justice. She believes a lawyer’s role in society is to uphold the cause of justice without regard to her own interest, uninfluenced by fear or favour. The Petitioner would go far for it as she did during her stint with the South African Human Rights Commission. She seeks to uphold justice not just in the court of law. She is passionate about taking care of our environment. She participated in the Young Southeast Asia Leaders Initiative on Environmental Issues in Hawaii and met Barack Obama. She is one of 5 members of the National Youth Leadership Council under the Jane Goodall Institute.
Soon she will be volunteering at the Sabah Wildlife Rescue Unit before she commences practice.
Her favourite Quranic verse is Surah An-Nisa, Verse 135: ‘O you who believe, stand out firmly for justice, even though it be against yourselves, or your parents, and your relatives. Whether one is rich or poor, Allah is more worthy of both. So follow not (personal) inclination, lest you not be just.’ This is a verse observed more in breach than compliance.
Reason 2. The Petitioner has a beautiful soul. She believes that one can be an effective lawyer without being nasty, cold and calculating. During our conversation, she told me that in her future practice she wants to prove that legal battles can be won and justice achieved with kindness, compassion and empathy. These are not common words in a lawyer’s vocabulary. She wants to practice in a way that truly helps her client, not just their case. She wrote the following to me:
‘I have a diverse background where I have experienced different things which would allow me to see something from different angles and not just from a legal point of view in solving problems.’
Reason 3. The Petitioner is intelligent, articulate and accomplished. Above all, she is passionate about whatever she chooses to involve herself with. She writes, ‘I will usually give my heart and soul when I am given a task. It may lead to feeling exhausted at times but I strongly believe that if I am passionate about my work, I will feel more accountable and do my best in completing my tasks.’
She is a Yayasan Tun Suffian scholar, a semi-finalist in the Brown Mosten International Client Consultation Competition in Puerto Rico, and won the best paper presented at the International Conference on Anti-Corruption and Good Governance in Universitas Muhammadiyyah Yogyakarta. She intends to start an NGO to use her words ‘to give a voice to the voiceless.’ I have mentioned her other accomplishments earlier. And there’s more. When I think about all of it, I wonder when she has time to eat, sleep and… date.
I can confirm that passion. When I posed her my series of 14 questions for pupils whose calls I move, she replied with 4 pages worth of thoughtful material in excellent English (A4, Single spacing, Font Size 10, unjustified) with this ending: ‘This was really fun, I really enjoyed answering each question which took me more time than expected. Thank you.’ Nobody has ever thanked me for that list of questions, never mind answering them deeply.
In closing, I submit that the Petitioner has excellent character and is a fit and proper person to be called to the Bar.
The Petitioner thanks her father Encik Che Ariffin bin Che Mahmood, her mother, Puan Nik Hasimah binti Nik Yahya, her siblings, Kak No, all those at AmerBon particularly the famous Encik Amer Hamzah and his Excellency Mr Edmund Bon, her beloved fiancé Rayza Ridzuan and her friends, for their affections, support and guidance. I believe the Petitioner’s cause papers are in order and my learned friends have no objections.
I pray that the Petitioner be admitted and enrolled as an advocate & solicitor of the High Court of Malaya.
Called on 14.4.2017.