Durban: A Durban father has realised his 30-year dream of becoming an advocate.
Thanigasalan Moodley, 48, of Silverglen, Chatsworth, recently took the oath of office before Deputy Judge President Isaac Madondo and Justices Thoba Portia Poyo-Dlwati and Rob Mossop in the Pietermaritzburg High Court.
Moodley said his journey, however, was not an easy one.
At the age of 14, Moodley said his father was killed in a hijacking incident.
“I had to instantly grow up and become the man of the house.
“I had to take care of my mom and two younger sisters.
“After school, I helped my mother at our family business, a service station, in Silverglen.”
Moodley, who matriculated from Southlands Secondary School, enrolled to study for the BA law degree at the University of Durban-Westville in 1991.
He said after completing his studies in 1994, he continued to run the family business and did not practise law.
“I liked to study law.
“However, without my dad around, I had to help my mother so furthering my studies to become an advocate was on the back burner.”
After a break of 20 years from studying, Moodley enrolled for the LLB degree at UKZN’s Howard College campus in 2014.
In 2018, he completed his studies and took the bar exam at the end of last year.
The father of three said qualifying as an advocate was taxing.
“I had to juggle my time in the business, family responsibilities and community activities.
“However, I owe a deep debt of gratitude to my mother, my wife and children.
“This was for their faith in me and understanding when I was buried in law books and could not spend as much time with them as I should have.”
Moodley, who is the chairman of the Natal Tamil Vedic Society Trust and Railway Barracks Shree Emperumal Temple in Chatsworth, said becoming an advocate was his greatest achievement thus far.
“Now, I would like to build up my practice and take on some weighty matters to make all my learnings useful.
“I also want to spend quality time with my family, who took second place to law books for many years.”
His advice to others: “You are never too old to learn.
“Learning is a lifelong activity and must not stop.”
Loshantha, Moodley’s wife, said: “I am proud of my husband for being able to pursue his studies with dogged determination while also heading a household and participating in community, religious and cultural activities.
“He is a good role model for our children.”