BH Achiever of the Year is first Malay/Muslim senior counsel
Mr Mohamed Faizal Mohamed Abdul Kadir was appointed a Senior Counsel earlier this year, and is the first Malay-Muslim one to be given the title.
Growing up in a three-room flat in Bedok North, life was not always easy for Mr Mohamed Faizal Mohamed Abdul Kadir, as finances were tight for his parents.
But his parents - a housewife and a taxi driver - did all they could to give back despite their own circumstances.
They, for one, provided home-cooked food to mosques, which is what has inspired Mr Faizal, 40, to always do the same even as he now serves as a deputy chief prosecutor and senior state counsel at the Attorney-General's Chambers.
Mr Faizal received the Berita Harian Anugerah Jauhari 2020, or Achiever of the Year award, from Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam yesterday for his outstanding achievements in the legal profession, as well as for his contributions to community causes. He was appointed a senior counsel earlier this year, and is the first Malay/ Muslim to be given the title.
The BH award is just the latest in accolades that Mr Faizal has received. In 2015, he won the President's Award for Youth and he was also inducted as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2016.
In the three years since then, he was named as one of the 500 Most Influential Muslims in the World - a list compiled by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre in Jordan.
Despite his many achievements, Mr Faizal cuts a humble figure, and credits his success to the contributions of others, in addition to hard work. He said: "My journey and the story of my professional career isn't mine alone. It is the story of love, hard work, support, mentorship and guidance by so many around me, both personally and professionally."
He currently funds scholarship programmes at his alma maters, Bedok View Secondary School and Tampines Junior College, for needy students who show promise and have performed well academically.
He has also contributed to community self-help group Mendaki since 2005, by being involved in its Young Mendaki Club, which provides Malay/Muslim secondary school students opportunities to hone their social and leadership skills, as well as structured workshops that help them develop into well-rounded individuals.
Berita Harian editor Mohd Saat Abdul Rahman said: "Coming from a humble background, his achievements make him an excellent role model - not only for the Malay/ Muslim community but also for all Singaporeans."
The Malay-language newspaper's annual award, which was started in 1998, is presented annually to outstanding Malay/Muslim individuals for their achievements in various fields.
The award was last given to Imam Syed Hassan Mohamed Al-Attas, the head of Ba'alwie Mosque in Lewis Road, in recognition of his contributions to interfaith work. President Halimah Yacob and master potter Iskandar Jalil are among past recipients of the award, now in its 22nd year.
Yesterday, Berita Harian also awarded national team footballer Ikhsan Fandi, 21, who is currently playing for Norwegian First Division club Jerv, its Young Achiever of the Year.
In his speech, Mr Shanmugam congratulated both winners and told football legend Fandi Ahmad that he hopes Mr Ikhsan will be successful just like his father. "Ikhsan is flying our flag very high, in a different part of the world. My sincere wish for Ikhsan, and a summary of everything I want to say about him, is that while many now know him as Fandi's son, I hope one day, Fandi will be known as Ikhsan's father," the minister said.
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