Due to scheduling issues, Garda Intern Fahmeda Naheed was unable to deliver her remarks at Eid at Croke Park 2022. The Irish Muslim Council/Comhairle Mhoslomach na hÉireann would like to apologise for this, and is pleased to publish her planned remarks in full here:
As-salamu ‘alaykum, Eid al-Adha greetings to you and all the Muslims of the world who are celebrating this special occasion.
I am Fahmeda Naheed and I am working as a Garda Staff in Regional Office, Anglesea Street, Cork, Ireland. I am proud to be a part of the Irish community which has welcomed me to contribute to communities through working with the second largest organisation in Ireland – An Garda Síochána – the Irish National Police Service.
Being Muslims and living in Ireland makes us very blessed and special. Being loyal and having love for the country is part of our Islamic faith. We Muslims are an integral part of the diverse Irish society. We make up 1.5% of the Irish population and have a productive part to play. Like me, we came from different parts of the world to build our lives and this country has provided us opportunities to do so.
We are very much part of this country, where many of us were born or have chosen as our home. It is where we raise our children, work, and study. Many of us are first-generation and second generations and native-born Irish citizens whose families have been living for decades. We represent nearly every ethnic group as Islam is not limited by race. It needs time to collaborate and create harmony among other faiths and ideologies, and actively participate in the community from an individual to collective level.
We have to keep in mind the inter-connectivity of humanity as an organic entity – when one individual is hurt, the other hurts, and saving one life equal to saving the entire humanity.
We have opportunities of integration available to us so we can serve our communities in the best possible way. We have religious liberties to enjoy. We can join the public services, including An Garda Síochána, with our cultural dress code – covering the head, keeping a beard, prayer breaks, fasting during the month of Ramadan, and enjoying serving communities.
I would to thank An Garda Síochána, the whole Irish Muslim Council under the leadership of Shaykh Dr Umar Al-Qadri for this invite and also the organisers, RTÉ for broadcasting this event, the Irish government which allowed us to have such events and the Irish community who have sent us greetings on this special occasion. Once again, Eid Mubarak to you all. Go raibh maith agaibh.