Jabina Islam and her sister Sadia Nessa stood at the witness box to deliver their powerful impact statement.
Here it is in full.
Our sister, Sabina Nessa was more than just a sister, a daughter, a teacher, she was a life that mattered. A life that did not deserve to be taken in such a heinous and cowardly way. Everyone kept saying to us she was in the wrong place at the wrong time. But she wasn’t, she had every right to be walking down that path, all glammed up and going to enjoy herself after a long week of work. She had the right to feel safe.
You snatched her from us without a second thought. We will never forget the pain in our parents’ eyes when they heard their daughter’s body was found dead. The sound of Our Father’s screams waking us up on that Sunday morning. You are an awful human being and do not deserve your name to be said. What kind of human does this however you are not a human being you are a disgusting animal
From a young age, our parents would tell us to be careful when going out, to always go out together or with someone, to text when we’re home, or they’ll be calling us constantly to check if we were safe. We all thought they were overly paranoid and a bit too overprotective. They weren’t. The worst came true for them. We foolishly thought this would never happen to us. Our parents are petrified every time one of their girl’s steps foot outside the house now. How can we convince our parents that we are safe in this world, when we are not convinced? You robbed us of our sister. You robbed the chance of us going on our next adventure, celebrating her 29th birthday de ella, her de ella watching myself and our little sister graduate, our children having Sabina by their side de ella, like she was with us when growing up. She was an amazing role model, she defied all norms, she strived to be independent, she was powerful, fearless, bright, and just an amazing soul.
How do you explain to our children that their auntie is no more, they will grow up without an amazing auntie. Sabina was funny and cared for her children and she would do anything for them. She would take her out shopping and trips to the park. She loved her auntie very much. Her eldest niece knew straight away something was not right and as a parent trying to explain to a five-year-old that her auntie is with Allah and she will be watching over you was truly devastating, seeing her face drop and having so many questions which we could not answer to. Her youngest daughter of her was only 10 months when you murdered her. How do we as a family explain to her when she’s old enough that she truly had an amazing aunty and loved her dearly even though she saw her for a short time of her life? We were lost for words and our hearts are aching of the pain of loss of Sabina.
After Sabina’s death, half term approached. Sabina had made plans to pick up her niece from my house and take her to her nan’s where she would spend her time, however who knew that summer holidays were her last time she would see her auntie. The thought of the half term hit us hard and knowing our sister would not be there at our mums. During half terms we would
both go to mums and spend time there however now it’s just us. The emptiness of walking past her bedroom de ella knowing she’s not there breaks us each time walking by, knowing that she wo n’t be sitting on the middle sofa in the living room munching on crisps or biscuits or taking Tilly the cat for a trim . How do we continue with life? Days are going past but knowing our sister will never walk through our mums’ front door again. We lay awake thinking did this really happen to us.
I had a dream about my sister. She came home and I was hugging her so tightly that I didn’t let go. I remember shouting for my parents and sisters saying Sabina’s here. I was hugging her and saying you’re ok now your de ella, you’re ok and I would not let go of her. I would do anything to just hold her one more time, see her, hear her, talk to her. I wish this dream was true and not just a dream.
You left our sisters body is such a state that we could not hold her hand one last time or be able to wash her body before her burial due to her body being in such a bad way, this was all down to you. When we visited her at the mortuary after finding out you murdered her, we saw her lying there hopeless, bruised, swollen and cuts on her face with blood. These images will forever remain in our minds and what Sabina went through. In our heads we have these images of what happened during the attack and how our sister must have felt when you decided to run after her and attack her from the back of her when clearly she could not defend herself. You planned this and made sure that she was alone and that no one was there to see you carry out this horrendous crime on our beautiful sister.
You did everything in your power to come up with excuses and not answer any questions about the murder of our sister which was clearly down to you but you awful human decided not to say anything.
You asked for a second examination and to go over the record and you got your way. Her brain from her was removed for pathologist to carry out tests and see how much trauma was caused by you and to identify her cause of death. You continued to torment her even though she was dead.
What makes us angry is that you left our sisters body is an unrespectable manner for your filthy desires. She was completely out cold when you hit her on the head and when she fell on the bench she broke a couple of ribs but you continued to be violent against her even though she was out cold. We just want answers why you killed her? why? How on earth are you allowed to sit here and say nothing and think its ok, because its not. You have no right to take an innocent life being our sister.
The thought of you not being present to hear our statements truly reflects what a coward you are not to face up to your responsibilities and to hear what damage you have caused our family.
Sabina wouldn’t want us to sit and mope around. She would want us to get up fight, keep moving and never let anyone break us. And that’s exactly what we will do. Our family will never forget what you did, but we will not let you take anymore from us.