A student from the University of Leicester has become the new Mayor of Oadby and Wigston.
Samia Haq, a final year Politics student, was inaugurated at a meeting in the council offices.
She has lived in Leicestershire for over 20 years and has been a councillor for Oadby Uplands ward for almost 10 years.
Mrs Haq said: “Being the first female Muslim Mayor in Leicestershire, I feel my appointment is a vindication of how, in this beautiful borough, we are advancing the cause of equality. I hope my appointment will serve as an inspiration to others.”
The Mayor’s nominated charity will be the Leicester’s Children’s Hospital and she will be helping to raise funds so they can continue their work to provide compassionate care for special needs children and those suffering with various illnesses.
Samia who lost her daughter Mariam from cerebral palsy and microcephaly meant that she spent a lot of the time in hospital as she was severely disabled with life-limiting conditions. Mariam passed away in 2009 when she was 9 years old.
“Having our beautiful daughter, “our princess”, with us for a few years meant that we’ve had the first hand experience of the excellent compassionate care that hospital provides for poorly and special needs children.
It has also made us aware of the challenges that staff face on a daily basis in meeting those care needs. We can never repay the debt we owe to all the hard working staff in the NHS but can show our gratitude by giving something back.”
Speaking of her time at the University, Mrs Haq added: “The help and support I received from the School of History, Politics and International Relations has been exemplary especially from the academic staff encouraging me to do my best every step of the way.
The University is a place where you are never far from new opportunities and experiences and I certainly benefitted from both.”
The inauguration was followed by a reception at Parklands in Oadby.