Ilhan Omar has been in the news ever since she got elected to the US congress, representing a district in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The Somali-born left her country of birth at a tender age with her family to seek asylum in the US.
She is not just an inspiration to many but a source of hope as well. Omar is one of the first two Muslim women elected to the US Congress.
Recently US President Donald Trump asked Omar and three other Democratic Congresswomen of colour to leave the US and return to their original countries of birth.
The other three non-white Democrat congresswomen are representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib, known as “the squad”.
At a rally last month Mr. Trump repeated his attack on them with many of his supporters chanting “Send her Back! Send her back!” as he attacked Ilhan Omar.
Honour to return home
Last month Omar and members of The Black Caucus visited Ghana as part of events marking 400 years since slaves left Africa for the USA.
Omar in a tweet said “They said “send her back” but Speaker @SpeakerPelosi didn’t just make arrangements to send me back, she went back with me.
So grateful for the honor to return to Mother Africa with the @TheBlackCaucus and commemorate The Year of Return!”
They said “send her back” but Speaker @SpeakerPelosi didn’t just make arrangements to send me back, she went back with me ✊🏽
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) August 1, 2019
Life in Kenya
Omar fled Somalia’s civil war with her parents at the age of eight and spent four years at a refugee camp in Kenya.
Her family settled in Minnesota in 1997, where there is a sizable Somali population.
She won a seat in the state’s legislature in 2016, becoming the first Somali-American lawmaker in the country.
Omar has forged a progressive political identity. She supports free college education, housing for all, and criminal justice reform.
She opposes Trump’s restrictive immigration policies, supports a universal health care system, and wants to abolish US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which has conducted deportation raids.