Initiation from the Uninitiated: Moving the Call of Noor Yasmin binti Samsudin

Sorority Initiation

This is not a photo of the Call to the Bar.

On 17 June 2011, Fahri has the privilege of delivering this speech on the occasion of Cik Noor Yasmin binti Samsudin call to the Bar before Justice Abang Iskandar bin Abang Hashim.

My Lord, I apologize for not filing my written submissions and bundle of authorities earlier. I however trust that my short oral submissions in support of the Petition will convince your Lordship of the trueness of this morning’s Petition.

My Lord, not all of us have the luxury of knowing the service of law as our destiny. The fortunate ones early on hear and soon after answer the call of law. There are those there by the wishes or prods of others. There are those who drift into it. And then there are those who discover it intuitively and find their calling.

That is how the Petitioner finds herself before us today. At first, she wanted to be a cop. No doubt too many episodes of Gerak Khas, her favourite TV show then had some influence on her. Then the medical show TV program, ER, instilled medical ambitions in her. Only to realize that like many lawyers, she surprisingly couldn’t stand the sight of blood.

And her passion is debating. She’s been heavily involved with it since her secondary education in Tuanku Syed Putra Secondary Science School on to her undergraduate years in UiTM Shah Alam right up until today. In fact, she has a competition coming up soon in which she is participating. The final ingredient to this is the fact that her family had a very realistic outlook about lawyers and so dissuaded her from taking the path of law. That last bit of resistance was all she needed to take the plunge and try law out in a foundation program.

The overarching theme for the Petitioner was clear from her earlier failed ambitions – she had an affinity with the law and wanted to help others – without blood getting in the way. This is what she writes about why she enjoys the law:

“Not for the fame, fortune or power (there’s power?!), but that one year changed the way I saw the world; that the world is not of only black and white but full of various shades of grey, that right and wrong is not always clear cut. There is an old saying that ‘There is no absolute truth just different version of reality.’ And I am thrilled to learn those different versions and to make a difference even in her smallest way possible; to gain knowledge and skills, trying to help make this unfair life fairer.”

This is what I like to hear about those that come to practise that say they want to help i.e. making life a little fairer. I don’t know whether others realize this? A lot of those that come to the law have an altruistic streak. A lot express that desire to help others. How many mainstream professions aside from the medical and the law can say that? You don’t hear engineers say, I joined engineering to do justice. You don’t hear people who join accounting say, I joined accounting to help others. Only those who come to the law say crazy things like that! I should know, my Lord, I was one of them.

In my interview with her, I found her to be an eloquent, determined, realistic, bright and enthusiastic young lady who is a pleasure to talk to. There are two traits that I want to make special mention about the Petitioner. I mention them simply because there is a scarcity of it these days – initiative and diligence. This came up when we discussed those who asked questions without first taking the trouble themselves to look it up. Or those that decline assignments because ‘I dunno how to do.’ It is refreshing to find the Petitioner, who is about to begin practice, shares my annoyance at that deplorable attitude.

The Petitioner’s attitude to such work habits and lack of curiousity clearly shows her to hold high standards for herself, and those of others, because she ends up doing their work too. This is clearly reflected in her strong CGPA score in her undergraduate years right down to her 8As in her SPMs. That she holds herself to such standards is a clear mark of her good character, My Lord. I could cite many other instances as evidence but I shall limit myself to one more and draw to a close.

I am happy to congratulate the Petitioner on taking up employment with Mr. Brendan Navin Siva. My Lord, I have known Brendan for a while now and know him to be a principled, reliable and diligent as he is dashingly handsome, especially when he smiles – both as lawyer and person as well. For myself, the fact that he is retaining her as a lawyer in his firm is an endorsement of her good character.

I therefore submit that the Petitioner possesses the requisite ‘good character’ as provided for under section 11(1)(b) of the LPA76. I am certain that she will in time persuade her parents that not all lawyers are well, lawyers.

The Petitioner would like to thank:

• Encik Kadir Kassim for taking her into Messrs. Kadir, Andri & Partners;
• Mr. Shamsul Iskandar and her future boss;
• Cik Aida for her sisterly advice;
• Her parents, Encik Samsudin Hamid and Puan Rusnah Tayib, and the rest of her family;
• Everybody at the firm especially Husna, Ros, Raihan, and Rehna
• All her friends and teachers from University and College
• Last but not least, Sam and Syam for making sure she had a social life.

The Petitioner credits Allah as the one for all she was, is and will be.

My Lord, I believe the cause papers in order, my learned friends without objection and that the Petitioner is a fit and proper person to be called to the Bar. I pray that she be admitted and enrolled as an advocate and solicitor of the High Court of Malaya.

Fahri Azzat thinks that his optimal rate for call moving is probably two a month to maintain quality of the speeches. He loathes the notion of treating the moving call ceremony as some lawyer churning factory with each introduction restricted to 3 minutes a call. Some burgers aren’t even cooked that quick, what more the introduction of a lawyer to society and the legal profession.


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Fahri Azzat practices the dark arts of the law. Although he enjoys writing and reading, he doesn't enjoy writing his own little biographies of himself. Like this one. He wished somebody else would do it for him. He has little taste in writing about himself in third person. He feels weird doing it. But the part he finds most tedious is having to pad up the lack of his accomplishments, or share some interesting facts about his rather uneventful life, as if there were some who found that oh-so-interesting; as if he were some famous person, like Michael Jackson. When he writes these biographies, the thought, 'Wei, Jangan Perasaan- ah!' lights up in his head. So he usually just lists what he got involved with, positions he held and blah, blah. But this time. Right here. Right this very moment. Uhuh. This one. This one right here. He's finally telling it like it is.

Posted on 19 August 2011. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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