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Interview with ‘bad girl’ turned hijabi: “I was obsessed with clubbing, fashion, and all that…”
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Interview with ‘bad girl’ turned hijabi: “I was obsessed with clubbing, fashion, and all that…”

It’s not often you meet a Gambian girl in the diaspora willing to wear the hijab, but Jahou Badjie did just that. And now she wants to reach out to Muslim girls, who are reluctant to give up their pleasure filled lives for Islam.

Read below our interview with Jahou:   


What’s On-Gambia: What brought you to the USA?

Jahou: I came to the US to join my family and of course further my education.

Would you kindly tell us how your interest in the hijab began?

To be honest, it wasn’t just one single, simple reason, but a combination of things like videos from YouTube (Islamic lectures) from Bilal Assaad, Mufti Menk, Siraj, Yusef Evan and a lot more imams. Reading the Quran, and learning more about my deen that made me realize that this was something I had to do, and which I decided to embrace.

So you were a bad girl?

(Laughs) Bad girl? No.  I was not really a bad girl but I was so obsessed about certain stuffs in life, clubbing, fashion, and all that but now I'm cool. I get to appreciate the things I have and I have learnt happiness doesn't really depend on how much you have in money or cloths, but how much you appreciate what you have and creating time and appreciating what Allah has given you.


How many boyfriends did you have in the past?

Boyfriends? I want to let that go and focus on now, no more boyfriends, girlfriend relationship.

What do you mean by girlfriend relationship?

Sorry that was a mistake, I meant boyfriend (laughs).

What was the attitude of your parents and friends after you became ahijabi?

I didn't tell my dad anything about it yet, but I'm sure he will be extremely happy and proud when he finds out inShaAllah. My friends, well most of them, were surprised. They never in million years thought that I'll ever do the hijab but alhamdulillah some were very supportive.


Is your dad not living in the USA?

My dad is back home in The Gambia.

In what way did the hijab impact your life so far?

I started praying and educating myself more about Islam. Now, alhamdulilah (praise be to Allah), my life has changed for better. I actually lost a lot of friends, but I am not sad at all. I am so happy because I know I have Allah. I don’t want to go back to my old life. This piece of cloth changed my life. I truly believe, when you do things for Allah and know true Islam, you know peace.

How would you describe Gambian girls in the USA?

I think they’re all beautiful, cool and calm People. It’s just that others are so obsessed about life stuffs and not so concerned about the hereafter. They say am young and will worship Allah when I grow up, but how sure are we that we will wake up to see tomorrow. Young people die all the time.

Have you ever had the opportunity to talk about the hijab to some of them?

Well, I do try giving them dawah(advice) regarding the hijab and how amazing it is.  Honestly, I really would love to see them wearing it one day soon inSh Allah. It’s hard, but I pray that Allah makes it easy on all of us.  After all, it’s not just about wearing the hijab, but about strengthening yourself from the inside. There are people that don't wear the Hijab and are closer to Allah and do more good than those who wear it. So we should not be quick to judge someone just by seeing them

 Are you looking for a husband to settle down now?

Husband, Well I leave it all in the hands of Allah. When the husband comes,alhamdoulillah. But I pray Allah gives me a man who will help strengthen my iman inShaAllah.


Finally, what is your message to young Muslims?

People should not live as if they are going to live forever; no one knows when his or her day will come, only Allah Subhana Wata’ala. It could be tomorrow or right now as you sitting there but are you really ready to go deep down in that dark grave with the way you living your life right now? Brothers and sisters turn to Allah before you return to Allah.

Thank you for having me jazakallahu khair.


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