It’s not easy juggling ‘two jobs’

Busy mum Nurul Izzah Anwar insists on breast-feeding her daughter Raja Nur Safiyah and on days when the Parliament sits, the baby joins her there to be nursed. Raja Nur Safiyah was only a few months old when Nurul Izzah, 29, won the Lembah Pantai parliamentary seat in the March 8 general election.
                    Quality time: Nurul Izzah playing with Raja Nur Safiyah at their home in Bukit Segambut.
Fortunately for the new Member of Parliament (MP), she can breast-feed in privacy using her mother’s former room at the Parliament office tower. A partition had been created for Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, then the Opposition Leader, to rest and pray.
When her father Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim took over from Dr Wan Azizah, Nurul Izzah continued to breast-feed behind the partition. “I prefer to breast-feed my daughter until she turns two,” said Nurul Izzah.
Chief administrator of Parliament building Datuk Kamaruddin Baria, when asked about a nursing room, said the administration would have to create space if Nurul Izzah requested for it.
Now seven months into her second pregnancy, Nurul Izzah will probably be the first woman to deliver a baby as a serving MP – and she insists on breast-feeding her second child as well. Asked how she would cope with a newborn, a toddler and her duties as an MP, Nurul Izzah, who is still busy organising functions and activities in her constituency said: “I have no answer for that. It is not an easy task for any other working mother for that matter.”
Nurul Izzah’s husband Raja Ahamad Shahrir is working overseas and only comes home during weekends. She said motherhood has made her more sensitive to the plight of single mothers and the struggles of women.
“It is tough, tiring but challenging,” she said.
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