X Close

Nation

Published: Friday April 4, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Friday April 4, 2014 MYT 10:25:08 AM

Hundreds pay last respects to passionate activist Fernandez

In loving memory: The main priest leading the prayers during Fernandez’s funeral at the Church of Divine Mercy in Shah Alam.

In loving memory: The main priest leading the prayers during Fernandez’s funeral at the Church of Divine Mercy in Shah Alam.

SHAH ALAM: Hundreds of relatives and friends of human rights activist Irene Fernandez gathered at the Church of Divine Mercy here yesterday to pay their last respects and honour the life of one of the country’s most passionate human rights activists.

Fernandez died of heart failure on March 31 at age 67.

“Irene was very much a public figure but she was also the life and heart of our family. Most people say she is the ‘Iron Lady’ … which was true whenever she was fighting injustice and oppression.

“But inside, she had a very soft and sensitive heart,” shared her husband of 35 years, Joseph Paul, at the end of the hour-and-a-half service.

With him were the couple’s three children – Katrina, Tania and Camerra Jose Maliamauv.

Fernandez was a prominent advocate for the rights of migrants and women in Malaysia.

She left teaching in her early 20s to fight for social causes.

In 1991, Fernandez helped found the Kuala Lumpur-based rights organisation Tenaganita which provides legal services and conducts advocacy for migrants who are victims of abuse and trafficking, refugees and asylum seekers.

Her tireless efforts won Fernandez many awards including the Amnesty International Award, the International PEN Award, the Jonathan Mann Award, the Right Livelihood Award and the Human Rights Monitor award by the Human Rights Watch.

Related story:

Irene, the lionhearted: A tribute

Tags / Keywords: Family & Community, Irene Fernandez

advertisement

  1. Radical plan to revive MAS
  2. Tanggal 31 cover version goes viral
  3. AirAsia kicks off free trial of in-flight WiFi service
  4. People in the peninsula can learn from their brothers, says DJ Dave
  5. IGP warns PPS to stop activities or face arrest
  6. Najib: Khazanah's RM6bil to MAS an investment, not a bailout
  7. Khazanah unveils 12-point plan for MAS
  8. YouTube sensation’s cover of Tanggal 31 goes viral
  9. Palace 'no' to remote control MB
  10. Once a gangster’s paradise

advertisement

advertisement