Mobina Jaffer Retires From the Canadian Senate

Senator Mobina Jaffer, member of the Senate Standing Committee on Human Rights, delivers remarks following the release of a report titled 'Combatting Hate: Islamophobia and its impact on muslims in Canada' in Ottawa, on Thursday, Nov. 2, 2023. PHOTO BY SPENCER COLBY /The Canadian Press

Mobina Jaffer retires from the Canadian Senate after 25 years of service, leaving a legacy of fighting for human rights and justice.

Jaffer was born in Uganda and came to Canada as a refugee fleeing the Idi Amin regime in 1972.  She was appointed to the Senate in 2001 by prime minister Jean Chretien and has the distinction of being the first Muslim senator, the first senator who was born in Africa, and the first senator of Indian  descent.

She served as Canada’s special envoy for peace in Sudan from 2002 to 2006, and as chair of the Canadian Committee on Women, Peace and Security.  She is a lifelong champion of human rights and the protection of minorities, with a special interest in children and women. She is a pillar of the Muslim community in Canada and worldwide.

Jaffer’s record in Parliament is impressive, from the bills and motions she has shepherded through the Senate, to those she has opposed because of her commitment to fundamental rights.

Even though Jaffer was appointed as a Liberal senator, she has always seen her role in the Upper House as one that is less about party loyalty and more about standing up for her province, minorities, and the long-term interest of Canada. She joined the Independent Senators Group in 2019 and has been a stalwart