Iktimal Hage-Ali Saga Part II

Iktimal Hage-Ali came to prominence in the Muslim community by drinking a glass of champagne when named NSW Young Australian of the Year for her services to the Muslim community.

Naturally, some Muslims were less than impressed; but Hage-Ali received support from the media and a number of gushing tributes were published about how wonderful she was and how mean-spirited the Muslim community was for criticising her.

Shortly thereafter, it all came crashing down when the same media outlets that had been boosting her, revealed she had been arrested and subsequently released as part of a drug bust. The story is summarised here.

Now Hage-Ali is back in the media.

This time it is because she is apparently suing the NSW government for up to $750,000. The Daily Telegraph reports:

The 22-year-old alleges she was wrongly apprehended and detained by Middle Eastern Crime Squad officers when they moved to shut down an alleged cocaine racket in Sydney’s southwest late last year.

The arrest occurred eight days before Ms Hage-Ali – a member of Prime Minister John Howard’s Muslim Community Reference Group – was named NSW Young Australian of the year by Governor Marie Bashir. While Ms Hage-Ali was arrested on suspicion of being a drug supplier, she was released without charge after admitting in a police interview the cocaine she bought was for her own personal use.

Police could have charged her with cocaine possession but used their discretionary powers to set her free.

So, contrary to what Baybers has written here, there is at least one Muslim “leader” who is standing up to the government.


#1 Eudaemonion on 07.25.07 at 1:56 am

Who is particularly suprised?

Iktimal is perfectly willing to dispense with one of the more pervasive religious and cultural strictures of Muslims in her consumption of alcohol. That’s a 1,400 year old stricture, obeyed by a good portion of 1.2 Billion, out the door.

It would then follow that, for one who has no problem risking her Immortal sole for an the occassional glass of plonk, a simple and relatively recent Act of Australian Parliament would provide no particular compelling disincentive.

To top this off, she is preparing to sue the Government for wrongful arrest, even though a controlled substance was found in her possession, and the Police had the grace to let her off completely from what would be particularly serious charges.

I’m sure her former cheerleading squad will now found some way to blame this on the Islam and Muslims Iktimal has seen fit to distance herself from theologically.

#2 sarah on 07.25.07 at 9:37 am

have mercy on us sinners o righteous one of perfection and virtue…
hage-ali aside the tone of your piece is the very thing that drives me away from “religious” people in general.
some muslim youth are in trouble- judging them instead of helping them is the very thing that alienates them from their families and communities.

#3 AAA on 07.25.07 at 10:07 am

She’s not just some “Muslim youth” in trouble, she’s someone who was advising the Prime Minister on Muslim youth issues. She was promoted as ROLE MODEL for the Muslim youths you claim to be worried about.

Don’t you think our troubled Muslim youth deserve better than a coke-snorting (the DT says she’s admitted it was for her own use), champagne-drinking (she admitted that she drinks) role model?

#4 sarah on 07.25.07 at 12:37 pm

i have no problems with the general post- i agree that people in positions of power and authority who presume to represent and receive accoloades for doing so must be continually questioned. the problem i have however is with presumptious examinations of the state of a person’s “immortal sole” (it’s a sneaker dude) and general level of sinfulness. (very catholic might i add.) and yes muslim youth DO deserve better.

#5 Eudaemonion on 07.26.07 at 12:46 am

No one is making judgements about the state of a persons Immortal SOUL here, Sarah. That is strictly the province of the Most Just, Most Merciful, ie God.

What I am examining is the relative importance of two strictures Iktimal has seen fit to ignore; the higher religious stricture and the temporal law of the land. Simply put, I’m not suprised about the latter since she’s already shown that her own wants and desires take precendence over such trifling matters as faith, let alone the law.

Now, you consider this line of thinking presumptious. I consider her being touted as the model of Islam in Australia presumptious. I guess our collective indignation at presumptuousness is not going to be resolved anytime soo.

#6 Irfan Yusuf on 07.31.07 at 5:26 pm

My understanding is that she was appointed to a reference group set up by the PM to advise him on Muslims. Not to advise him on Islam. What proportion of Muslims does she represent? What proportion of Muslims do not drink alcohol and/or do not take recreational drugs? I don’t know.

We need to distinguish between representing Islam (as a set of religious and ethical ideals) and representing Muslims (as they are).

#7 pommygranate on 08.02.07 at 9:59 am

Why is she able to sue the police for wrongful arrest? She was caught with cocaine in her possession, to which she freely admits. I would have thought that this would at least make her a suspect in a dealing charge? She was investigated and released without charge. Surely end of story?

She’s not exactly blameless is she?

#8 Shadower on 08.02.07 at 2:16 pm

The police cannot bring back this case and decide to charge her now, can they?

Either way, it would be quite silly to make an enemy of the police if you like to snort coke every now and then. But that is my opinion anyway.

#9 AAA on 08.02.07 at 6:26 pm

I think she’s probably suing the police because thanks to them she had to give up her trophy.

Leave a Comment