On April 20th this year, Bill Gates presided over a school debating championship, he was to grant the Best Floor Speech.
Jon Snow was amongst the judges, Firdaws who was from Kensington Aldridge Acadamy was quite exceptional, with her composure, her content, and her performance.
Firdaws had been portrayed as the most brilliant, clever, expressive girl. She was positive, and she used language superbly.
Jon Snow was blessed to have witnessed her first hand and afterwards, and he frequently questions what might have become of her, and what were her life opportunities once she’d been chosen.
Would she have prevailed over the cracks in our society and succeeded?
But just 50 days after, she, her two brothers, her father and her mother all died on the 22nd floor of the Grenfell Tower.
The Muslim custom is to bury the dead inside 24 hours. Months on at the East London Mosque, finally Firdaws and her family were given their funeral.
The Imam was asked how their families come to terms with leaving them unburied for so long, but they understand the reasons and they do their best and what they can’t do, they simply don’t regret, but still, they pray.
Therefore, as a Muslim, they have no limitation, they can continue to pray before interment, and after the interment.
Jon Snow met with Firdaw’s closest surviving relation, aunt Assema. Assema said that nothing like this was ever expected. It hurt bad and there was difficulty accepting what had happened, particularly the family.
Death is always difficult to come to terms with. Assema said that she keeps forgetting that they’re gone and that when she’s thinking of things, she thinks of her family as if they’re still alive, so it’s very difficult for everyone.
On the day of the funeral, outside the mosque, there was despair everywhere. Firdaw’s uncle was heartbroken and several of the women on the street also found it difficult to manage their emotions, and there were others looking out from windows, who were crying as they faced the scene as there were a series of hearses queueing to bring the Hashim family for burial in outer London.
The father, who’s a London black cab driver looked poignantly at the casket of Firdaw’s being put into the hearse, that was shared with her tiny brother. Their mother being put in the hearse first, and the children underneath.
There was a stark contrast to the day as Firdaw’s left behind a record of such enthusiasm for the future, that she would never see.
And being in a debate is enjoyable and marvellous and fascinating because it gives you a voice to say what you believe, what you think, to help shape the world.
Grenfell should never have occurred and we must fight to prevent it ever occurring again. It was an unnecessary loss of a life with so much potential and Firdaw’s deserved so much more. So, let her passing not be in vain.
May Grenfell’s legacy be that her passing electrified us all and to never let people die in this way again.
The life of Firdaw’s and her family was taken far too soon, and before their time. Only God knows why, but Firdaw’s ability will never be shown, as the fire took so many good people, the young, the old, and the brave.
It’s been extremely sad for the family and Grenfell should not be ignored and there has to be some kind of justice for these people that lost so much, especially their families.
Two more victims of the Grenfell Tower fire were formally named, as an inquiry into their deaths was started at the Westminster Coroner’s Court, and Hashim Kedir 44, and his 12-year-old daughter, Firdaw’s was two of at least 80 victims of this disastrous fire which happened at the west London tower block in June.
Mr Kedir and Firdaws were both identified using their DNA. An inquest court was told that they were discovered on the 22nd floor and the circumstances of both mortality were consistent with the effects of fire.
Mr Kedir’s sisters and nieces announced in a statement through the Metropolitan Police that he was everybody’s favourite in the family.
His daughter, Firdaws, was characterised as the most intelligent, wise and eloquent girl with the voice of an angel.
Another young victim was an 11-year-old girl, who perished with her family and was identified by her dental records.
The court was informed that Fatima Choucair was discovered on the 22nd floor of the tower block and earlier hearings told that her parents Bassem Choucair, 40, and Nadia Choucair, 33, as well as her 13-year-old sister Mierna and 60-year-old grandmother Sirria, were further recovered from the 22nd floor.
The court was informed that the little girl’s death was consistent with the effects of fire. Meanwhile, months on from the fire, the preponderance of the survivors reside in temporary accommodation.
Only 48 of the 175 accommodation offers have been taken, according to the Grenfell Response Team (GRT), notwithstanding Theresa May’s promise to rehouse all survivors within three weeks of the fire. And Justice4Grenfell (J4G) announced the stark numbers were a testament to the continuing misery of the survivors.
Firdaws, whenever anyone speaks of her, are swept away by the emotion and hurt in their voices. She was something really extraordinary and moved and enriched so many people’s lives even at such a young age and a there was a passage from an essay that Firdaw’s composed when she left primary school about all her wishes and what she wanted for the future. She was a radiant star, she could compose, sing and draw and had so much ability.