In an unprecedented victory for the Canadian Muslim community, many Muslims emerged victorious in the country’s 2019 general elections held on Monday.
At least 11 Muslim candidates, including four women, won seats in an election expected to spell a sea-change in Canadian politics.
The Liberals were elected in 157 districts, with Justin Trudeau winning his Montreal riding of Papineau. The party needed 170 to gain a majority.
The Conservatives were next with 121, followed by Bloc Quebecois with 32 and the New Democrats with 24 seats.
In Mississauga Center, Liberal Omar Alghabra, the mechanical engineer MBA graduate, was elected Monday for the third time.
Alghabra, a community activist served in the House of Commons from 2006 to 2008 and was elected again in 2015.
He offered his constituents a strong voice on both local and national issues like the Liberal Critic for Natural Resources, as well as Citizenship and Immigration.
Nearby in Mississauga-Erin Mills, Liberal incumbent Iqra Khalid won a second term moving ahead of first-time Conservative party candidate Hani Tawfilis, a pharmacist and spokesperson for the Coptic Orthodox community.
“Over the past four years we have been there for our constituents and listening to the concerns of our residents and we’ll continue to do so,” said Khalid, who cited the Liberals’ record on the economy, employment and infrastructure.
“The number one issue I heard in our campaign was climate change and we’ve worked really hard to make sure we’re combating that in a reasonable way and a doable way and I really appreciate the platform Canadians have bought into here in Mississauga-Erin Mills and all of Peel Region.”
Khalid, a young Pakistani-Canadian woman, graduated from York University in 2007, with a double major in Criminology and Professional Writing.
The legal professional with the City of Mississauga has held numerous volunteer positions including President of the Pakistani Student Association, Media Relations Ambassador for the York University Student Alumni, Communication Coordinator for the Council for the Advancement of Muslim Professionals, and a Director on the Board for Breaking Free Foundation.
Ziad Aboultaif has won a second term to represent Edmonton Manning in Ottawa after receiving overwhelming support from voters, Edmonton Journal reported.
The incumbent Conservative candidate defeated his closest rivals who was Liberal candidate Kamal Kadri.
“The purpose of every MP there is to serve Canada in general and every Canadian,” he said.
“I think ultimately, that’s what everyone’s job should be. I believe in people, I believe in working with constituents and being in touch with them.”
Scarborough Centre MP Salma Zahid has won a second term after defeating her Conservative challenger, mechanical engineer Irshad Chaudhry, Toronto Star reported.
“It has been the honor of my life to serve the people of Scarborough Centre,” said Zahid in an interview with the Star.
“For me, it was a time to think about my family. And when I talk to people in my riding it’s really about those issues,” said Zahid. “I have a very diverse riding with people from 200 different countries. Everyone wants health, a good job a suitable place to live and a secure community to grow.”
Liberal incumbent Ali Ehsassi retained his seat Monday night in the riding of Willowdale,” Toronto Star reported.
“We engaged voters and remained positive, and I think that made all the difference in this race,” Ehsassi said in an interview after he was declared the winner.
“From everything we heard at the door, it’s incumbent upon us to return to Ottawa, roll up our sleeves, work with other parties and make sure we’re focused on the issues that matter to Canadians,” Ehsassi added.
Holding a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto and a Master’s of Science from the London School of Economics, Ehsassi is a lawyer by trade.
He also obtained his LL.B. from Osgoode Hall Law School and his LL.M. at Georgetown University Law Center.
Liberal candidate, immigration minister and incumbent MP Ahmed Hussen has been re-elected in the Ontario riding of York South—Weston.
Hussen has served as Canada’s immigration minister since January 2017, when former Liberal MP John McCallum stepped-down from the role to take on the position of ambassador to China.
Hussein, who earned his B.A (History) from York University and his Law Degree from the University of Ottawa, was recognized in 2014 by Toronto Star as one of ten individuals who have made substantial contributions to the community.
The Somali-born lawyer and activist also emerged as a powerful community leader after co-founding the Regent Park Community Council in 2002, as well as sourcing $500 million revitalization project of Regent Park.
Majid Jowhari was neck and neck with Conservative challenger Costas Menegakis for the Richmond Hill riding as votes trickled in Monday evening, Toronto Star reported.
With a little over a quarter of the riding’s polls reporting as of 10:45 pm, Jowhari held a slim lead over Menegakis, who held the riding from 2011 to 2015.
Liberal Candidate Maryam Monsef has defeated Conservative candidate Michael Skinner in Peterborough—Kawartha, Global News reported.
Monsef, who served as the Minister for Women and Gender Quality, had 26,658 votes (39.3 percent) through 276 of the 283 polls reporting as of 1:55 a.m. Tuesday. Skinner had 23,606 votes (34.8 percent).
“Every single vote matters and you guys brought it home tonight,” she said.
Serving as the Minister of Democratic Institutions in November 2015, she became one of the youngest Canadians ever to be appointed to a ministry and the first Muslim to serve in Cabinet.
The 33-year-old MP co-founded the Red Pashmina Campaign that raised over $150,000 for women and girls in Afghanistan. She is also the co-recipient of the Peterborough YMCA’s Peace Medallion.
Incumbent Yasmin Ratansi claimed Don Valley East for the Liberals Monday night after defeating Conservative rival Michael Ma to pitch the PM for a spot in the cabinet, Toronto Star reported.
“Many (Liberal cabinet members in the previous government) were neophytes and there were hiccups we could have avoided,” said the 68-year-old trained accountant who was the first Muslim woman elected to Parliament in 2004.
“We need the A team to be in the cabinet . . . The information I kept getting at the door was that the front bench was not that strong and it needed some boosting . . . There are a lot of us with a lot of experience in the finance area, in the governance area, in international trade and relations.”
Arif Virani achieved something no Parkdale-High Park incumbent has in a federal election since 2004. He won a second term.
The Liberal incumbent held off a challenge from NDP candidate Paul Taylor to win re-election race.
Liberal candidate Sameer Zuberi has won the race in the Pierrefonds-Dollard riding. Zuberi had a lead of close to 40 percentage points over the Conservative Party of Canada candidate Mariam Ishak.