Thursday, 1 May 2014

UK-Bahrain Islamic Finance Summit in London

UK-Bahrain Islamic Finance Summit in London
 Dr. Mozammel Haque
The UK-Bahrain Islamic Summit was held at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO), London on Tuesday, 8th of April, 2014. The Summit forges partnership to uncover new trade and investment opportunities in both countries. UK and Bahrain also agreed a joint framework to enhance collaboration on Islamic finance at the Summit held in London and also working together to promote Islamic Finance.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), signed by Senior Foreign Office Minister Baroness Warsi and His Excellency the Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain Mr. Rasheed Mohammed Al Maraj, set out plans to boost cooperation through an education and skills programme and the establishment of a working group devoted to the development of Islamic finance-driven trade and investment between the two countries, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office press release said.

Islamic finance is currently growing 50% faster than conventional banking and is worth £1.3 trillion globally reaching an expanding market of over 2 billion people. It accounts for over 25% of banking in the Gulf.

Over the last six months, the UK has successfully hosted two major Islamic finance events; the World Islamic Economic Forum and the Global Islamic Finance and Investment Conference.

Baroness Sayeeda Warsi
In her UK keynote speech, Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the senior Foreign Minister, welcomed the Baroness Morris of Bolton, Baroness Symons and ambassadors to the Foreign & Commonwealth Office while hosting the UK-Bahrain Islamic Finance Summit here in London. She said, “I am delighted to host today’s UK-Bahrain Islamic Finance Summit. It is an honour to welcome so many prominent experts from both countries at this first bilateral Islamic Finance sovereign summit of its kind in the UK.”

While referring to the deep-rooted relationship between the two countries going back nearly 200 years, Baroness Warsi mentioned, “This year we celebrate the 200th anniversary of UK-Bahrain relations. As well as the close and longstanding relationship enjoyed by our two countries, Bahrain is considered an established innovator in Islamic Finance. It issued the first international Sovereign Sukuk in 2001, which drove the Gulf Corporation Council Islamic capital market. And with the largest concentration of Islamic finance institutions in the region, Bahrain is one of the pre-eminent Islamic Finance centres in the Gulf.”
Baroness Warsi raised the question: “Why is this Islamic Finance important?” and immediately said, “Every minister in this government is a trade minister; we are constantly finding ways out to set up business.”

“Islamic Finance is growing at a remarkable pace; 50% faster than traditional banking. It is estimated that the global Islamic finance investment would be worth about 1.8 trillion and it is expected to grow at 10-15% per annum reaching at an expanding market of over 2 billion people. 5% of Bahrain,” she mentioned.

The Senior Foreign Minister also said, “Bahrain is a natural partner for the UK on Islamic Finance and as you will hear today, Bahrain is an established innovator having issued the first international Sukuk in which drove the Gulf Corporation Council Islamic capital market. Bahrain has also the biggest and one of the pre eminent Islamic finance centre in the Gulf.”

Mentioning about Islamic finance in the UK, Baroness Warsi said, “As a leading global financial centre, the UK has a great track record on Islamic Finance. We have more than twenty institutions offering Islamic finance and six wholly Shari’ah- compliant banks. We also have over twelve Universities offering related specialist courses and qualifications. It is not just in words; it is in the vein of that ambition that the Prime Minister announced at the World Islamic Economic Forum.”

South Africa and Luxemburg are already there. “So therefore the race is on. And for that reason, I am proud to say that less then this financial year. It is anticipated that this will be an Ijara structure backed by government property and growing an open competition up already appointed on this project,” said Baroness Warsi.

Baroness Warsi also mentioned, “Since the World Islamic Economic Forum we introduced Shari’ah-compliant Sukuk. Why? Because the Prime Minister fundamentally belief that religion should never be a barrier. I would add in a Shari’ah-compliant model which are very successful; part of long scheme loan more your entrepreneur are able to settle. Why we will introduce Shari’ah-compliant finance? This February we extended our scheme providers of home mortgages which are consisted of Islamic Finance. And just last month the UK regulatory body, the Bank of England and the PRA published a operating in the United Kingdom.”

Baroness Warsi expressed her ambition, “My ambition is to go further and to go a bigger role in developing Islamic finance. My vision is to create Islamic finance global club; why we will establish the global Islamic Finance and investment group which recognise the Bank of England from around the world.”

In addition to the trade relationship between UK and Bahrain, Baroness Warsi was delighted to welcome “a new agreement and a new collaboration which will be held” and “will continue following the success of the global Islamic financing investment group.”

Baroness Warsi also expressed her hope that this meeting will “develop new partnership between the private sector and the academia world”.

“We have much to share about how to grow the industry successfully. To underscore this ambition, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed at the Summit, which gives the UK and Bahrain a strong framework on which to develop our ongoing collaboration,” mentioned Baroness Warsi.

His Excellency the Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain
Mr. Rasheed Mohammed Al-Maraj
Earlier, the Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain, His Excellency Mr. Rasheed Mohammed Al-Maraj, addressed the delegation and said in his Bahrain keynote speech, “I would like first to express my appreciation to Baroness Symons, Baroness Warsi, for her pro-active initiative for Islamic Finance and taking the lead in organising this Summit. I would also like to thank His Excellency the UK Ambassador to Bahrain and his team for their hard work in co-organising Islamic Finance Summit. Last but not least I also like to thank the members of both the UK-and Bahrain delegation for their support and being here today.”

Speaking about Islamic Finance, Mr. Rasheed Mohammed Al-Miraj mentioned, “The Islamic Finance industry is currently valued at US$1.6 trillion dollars. It is growing at 15% per annum, and is active in almost all of the major financial centres.  More than 500 institutions worldwide practice Islamic finance in banking, insurance and asset management or private equity. It is active in 75 countries. Tailored counting standards have been implemented, and a tailored risk management framework is in place to reflect the risks arising out of the unique product structure which forms heart of the industry.”

Tracing the origin of the modern Islamic Finance, Mr. Al-Maraj said, “The modern Islamic finance industry was born some forty years ago, primarily to fulfil the needs of those customers who wanted to conduct their financial affairs in accordance with the requirements of their faith. However, Islamic finance is available to all, no one is excluded from benefitting from it. The ethical foundation of Islamic finance and its emphasis on fairness for both parties dovetails nicely with contemporary thinking in relation to corporate social responsibility (CSR) and socially responsible investing (SRI). Moreover, the overriding principle of Islamic finance; namely the prohibition of debt trading, trade speculations and the selling of what you don’t own have all proven during the financial crisis that the Islamic finance business model is more resilient than its conventional counterpart.”

Mr. Al-Maraj gave a brief overview of the Islamic Finance industry today. He said, “There is a paradigm shift happening before our eyes. In a number of countries Islamic banking, for the first time, has crossed the 25% threshold. This means that a quarter or more of total banking assets in many countries undertaken within the Islamic banking framework is at or close to the critical mass required to provide the impetus for the next phase of growth - to achieve a majority market share - which could be attained more quickly than the time it took to achieve the first 25%. This is because the initial hiccups of an evolving industry have been overcome, including the implementation of robust necessary regulatory frameworks, and an exponential increase in public awareness about Islamic finance. Future growth will be more a function of supply side issues than demand side ones.”

“On the other side of the spectrum, a number of countries are opening up to Islamic finance for the first time - in Africa, Europe, Asia Pacific and Central Asia. Islamic Development Bank, a multilateral institution, dedicated to promote Islamic finance worldwide, has approved technical assistance grant requests from 8 countries to enable changes in their legal and regulatory frameworks over the next two years. Uganda, Tunisia, Mozambique, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Azerbaijan are included among them. Islamic finance is resurging in major economies such as Turkey and Indonesia where the current market share of Islamic finance assets is less than 5%, but with renewed government commitment the pace of growth is likely to accelerate in the near future. China, India, Russia and other emerging countries have not opened up to Islamic finance formally as yet, but they are watching with keen interest and may enter the market in the foreseeable future,” mentioned the Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain.

Mr. Al-Maraj also said, “The recent inclusion of South Korea as a member of the Islamic Financial Services Board and the change of regulations in Hong Kong to enable Sukuk issuance are very healthy indicators of the progress of Islamic finance,  and they are important indicators which are likely to uniform the decision-making process in these markets. I believe we are in the critical stage of the evolution of the Islamic finance industry based on the paradigm shift in Muslim majority markets and in new markets opening up to Islamic finance.”

Speaking about the advantage of London offering, Mr. Al-Maraj said, “Clearly, the UK Government understands the significant opportunity Islamic finance offers. Its decision to make London the leading western hub for Islamic finance reflects this. London already enjoys the reputation as the global financial centre; the addition of Islamic finance will help it attract issuers and investors from the Middle East, Far East and elsewhere to take advantage of London’s offerings.”

Mr. Al-Maraj then turned to recent events in his homeland Bahrain. He mentioned, “Bahrain was voted top in several of the international development initiatives in Islamic finance; a recognition that it remains proactive and creative in identifying and implementing initiatives”. By way of example, he said, “We recently introduced an innovative approach to the measurement of solvency for Takaful business, we are re-engineering the current market practice of Sharia-compliance, and we are currently working with a first class consultant and AAOIFI to significantly enhance the Certified Islamic Professional Accountant qualification which will make it equivalent to the conventional counterpart accreditations.”

Speaking about the future prospect of Islamic Finance, Mr. Al-Maraj said, “Let me share with you the perspective we have of what needs to be done to secure a sound and prosperous future for the Islamic finance industry globally. The excellent track- records of, and the promising opportunity in, Islamic finance provide a solid and robust foundation for this industry to advance further as a mainstream global industry.”

“I wish therefore to utilize this Summit, and our cooperative efforts thereafter, to implant the seeds of cooperation with the City of London to achieve this objective. More specifically, the City of London can play a role in the globalisation of standards issued by AAOIFI, IFSB and IIFM,” said Mr. Al-Maraj and added, “The industry needs more accomplished leadership at all levels; people who are committed to Islamic finance, understand its principles and differentiated structures and who are also good professional bankers, insurance specialists, asset managers, etc.”

 Speaking about the challenges and opportunities, Mr. Al-Maraj said, “It is perhaps the biggest challenge for all of us but also the biggest opportunity if we can do it right. In addition to our joint efforts in the development of financial services and its regulation, both countries benefitted from our longstanding relationship in training and education. This partnership can be further enhanced to achieve world leading qualifications, linked with a cross-offering of vocational training and academic programme in Islamic finance. Both Bahrain and the UK have some outstanding educational and vocational institutions which are doing a great job in this space, and significant progress can be achieved through increased cooperation in this area.”

The Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain also said, “As the financial sector is a highly regulated industry, a key component for the acceptance of Islamic finance at the regulatory and the government level. The experience of the last forty years suggests a strong correlation between regulatory clarity and the rate of growth of Islamic finance in a market. Recognising the unique aspects of Islamic finance and making necessary adjustment to the legal and regulatory frameworks is the correct approach to adopt. We are ready, able and willing to assist the City of London in its efforts in this domain.”

The FCO press release said, “Today marks an important day in the long history of Bahrain-UK relations as the two countries will be extending significant cooperation to each other to promote Islamic banking and finance. A joint committee has been formed for this purpose and a MoU has been signed. Both the UK and Bahrain have their strengths in Islamic finance education, training and practice, and their cooperation will open new opportunities for the Islamic finance industry.”

Welcome address by
Mr. Edward Oakden
Earlier, Mr. Edward Oakden, Director, Middle East and North Africa, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, gave a very warm welcome particularly to the Guest of Honour Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain Mr. Rasheed Mohammad Al-Maraj, to the Bahraini Ambassador to the City of London, Baroness Symons and to the others distinguished guests who attended the Summit.

This is the first bilateral Islamic Finance Summit and the UK and Bahrain have had for nearly 200 years now a very strong relationship, Mr. Oakden said.

Mr. Oakden said, “Islamic finance is growing at a remarkable pace, 50% faster than traditional banking; growing 10% to /15% a year. Given the base rate is lower nonetheless it already comprises 25% of the banking in the Gulf.”

He also said, Britain is a natural partner for you in that area and even Bahrain is already an established innovatory in the field. “You have the biggest concentration of Islamic financial institutions in the region,” he said. .

As regards, UK, Mr. Oakden mentioned, “In London, here in UK, we are first nation outside the Islamic world to issue a Sovereign Sukuk; we are working hard to develop our own Islamic financial standard; already we have more than 20 institutions; wholly Shari’ah-compliant and banks. Well we have 12 Universities offering specialised courses and qualifications in Islamic finance. We tried to adjust our financial legislation to bring advantages to those who wanted to take Islamic Finance free; so we remove the double taxation from Islamic mortgages; extended tax relief on Islamic mortgages to companies and individuals.”

Besides the welcome address, the Bahrain keynote speech and the UK keynote speech, there were three sessions; the session 1 was on Investment opportunities in the UK and Bahrain, the role of Islamic finance and new innovation in investing, chaired by Sir Michael Bear, CEO, Regeneration Investment Organisation. The session 2 was on Co-operating to build excellence in Islamic finance education and training, chaired by the Baroness Morris of Bolton, OBE DL. The session 3 was on Getting the regulatory and legal environment right, chaired by Mel Beaman, Head Overseas Banks Department, Bank of England. 

Lifetime Achievement Award given to Professor Dawud Noibi

Prime Minister joins Muslims to recognise the
very best of British Muslims achievement

Dr. Mozammel Haque

Professor Dawud Noibi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Association of Nigeria (MAN) UK, was given The Editor’s Lifetime Achievement Award at The Muslim News Award for Excellence Annual Ceremony, held at London’s Grosvenor House.

British Prime Minister David Cameron, M.P. joined some 800 people to celebrate the 12th The Muslim News Awards of Excellence at London’s Grosvenor House on Monday, the 31st of March 2014. The coveted award ceremony recognises the very best of Muslim contribution to British society.

The Guest of Honour, British Prime Minister, David Cameron, presenting the Enterprise award to Shabir Randeree, Executive Chairman of DCD Group, said, “I’m delighted to have taken part in this year’s Muslim News Awards for Excellence, where we are able to champion and celebrate the huge contribution British Muslims make to our country. I was truly impressed hearing about the extraordinary work of the nominees and winners, and it was great to have been able to meet some of them tonight.”

The special Judges Award went to Ola Lawal, an active volunteer working to improve the lives of young and disabled people, as well as the local community around her.

Amongst the other 15 winners were, in sport, Mo Farah, Olympic gold medallist, who is also involved in various philanthropic initiatives; in the media, Roohi Hasan, a senior producer at ITV News; Children’s award went to 10-year-old, Ahmed Saleh, who has won numerous kickboxing and freestyle karate titles at national, European and global levels.

Cameron said, “I see for myself on a daily basis the massive contribution of British Muslims. From my own colleagues, such as Sayeeda Warsi, Sajid Javid and Tariq Ahmad on the Government benches to the Muslim businesses and enterprises that are bringing growth back to Britain. And of course I frequently see the outstanding achievements of Muslim sportsmen and women, public servants, entertainers and community leaders. The list goes on and on.”

 “Tonight we celebrate an entire community – one that is vibrant, hard working and proud. My message to British Muslims is that this Government is here for you. We are backing hard working families who want to get on and do the right thing; we are reforming the education system, giving parents more say and delivering the schools and skills that our young people need to succeed; we are reforming the welfare system so it rewards those who want to work; we are cutting taxes, so that people get to keep more of their hard earned money, and we are creating jobs, so people can provide for their families and feel secure. This is all part of our long term plan to build a stronger economy and I know that British Muslims will play a vital part in helping to achieve future prosperity and security for our country,” said British prime minister.

Special guests included Attorney General, Dominic Grieve, Shadow Justice Secretary, Sadiq Khan, Minister of State at Ministry of Justice, Simon Hughes.
They were joined by civic and religious leaders, as well as representatives from the worlds of politics, business, sport and the arts, to honour unsung heroes and heroines of the community.

Now in its 12th year, the ceremony has distinguished itself for pioneering an initiative that finds the very best in British Muslims. The Editor of The Muslim News, Ahmed J. Versi, said, “We began this event twelve years ago because we wanted to acknowledge the noble accomplishments and displays of distinction within the British Muslim community and showcase the tremendous contributions British Muslims make to Britain. We wanted also to identify and highlight Muslim role models for the younger generation.”

Lifetime Achievement Award to
Professor Dawud Noibi
Professor Dawud Noibi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Association of Nigeria (MAN) UK, was given The Editor’s Lifetime Achievement Award at The Muslim News Award for Excellence Annual Ceremony, held at London’s Grosvenor House.

Prime Minister, David Cameron, MP
Earlier, the Guest of Honour, Prime Minister, David Cameron, MP, paid warm tribute to British Muslims’ achievements, especially in helping their communities and the society at large. The event is recognised as the best for highlighting the Muslim contribution to the British society, Versi said.

Cameron, the guest of honour, while presenting the main award, “the Enterprise Award” to Shabir Randeree, a leading businessman from the Muslim community, said that he was delighted to take part in this year’s awards, where “we were able to champion and celebrate the huge contribution British Muslims make to this country.”

He said he was truly impressed of hearing about the extraordinary work of nominees and winners and expressed delight to have been able to meet them.

Prime Minister paid tribute to a number of British Ministers who are from Muslim origin, including Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, a senior minister at the Foreign Office.

Equally, he recognised the important contribution of British Muslim businessmen, sportsmen and women, public servants and other community leaders.

David Cameron has also said he will keep Halal meat “safe in Britain” and would never impose restrictions on religious slaughter as long as he is Prime Minister.

He also said he was concern by “intolerance” towards Muslims in some, and pledged to “stamp out once and for all the intolerance that blights people’s lives,” the Huffington Post reported.

He told the audience at the Muslim News event: “Really tackling Islamophobia means making absolutely sure that no Muslim is held back from living their life or reaching their goals, simply because of the faith they follow.

“Soon the food will arrive and you will be able to eat. Let me make it absolutely clear, that while I am Prime Minister of this country, halal is safe in Britain.”

Editor of The Muslim News, Ahmed Versi
Now in its 12th year, the ceremony has distinguished itself for pioneering an initiative that finds the very best in British Muslims. Earlier, while welcoming the distinguished guests, ministers, religious leaders and community leaders, The Editor of The Muslim News , Ahmed J. Versi, said, “We began this event twelve years ago because we wanted to acknowledge the noble accomplishments and displays of distinction within the British Muslim community and showcase the tremendous contributions British Muslims make to Britain. We wanted also to identify and highlight Muslim role models for the younger generation.”

Addressing the guests, the nominees and winners of the Awards, the host of the event, Mr. Versi said in his welcoming address, “These awards are all about you. You are the reason we are here tonight. Your creativity, dynamism and enthusiasm to make a difference, is what we are here to celebrate tonight. As in previous years, we have been humbled by the quality and the quantity of entries for each award category. Indeed, this year has set a new record for the number of nominations received.”

“Given the disproportionate focus on bad news reporting when it comes to Islam and British Muslims, it is all the more important that we should honour good practice, and celebrate the exemplary work of the illustrious men, women and children present among us tonight. There are countless individuals and organisations striving to make a difference to the way Muslims are perceived and portrayed in our society. This award ceremony is one way to ensure that their contributions are not marginalised or overlooked,” he mentioned.

Once more, The Muslim News Awards for Excellence has brought together over 800 people of all ages, backgrounds and disciplines, from around the country as far as Scotland, to demonstrate to all – and to young Muslims in particular – that vitality, dynamism, diligence, creativity, inspiration, progress and reward are all alive and kicking in the British Muslim community. It is represented here in abundance.

Versi lamented, “Yet, in the face of our many visible successes, there are those who refuse to relent and insist that Muslims are ‘disloyal’ to our country and in ‘need of integration’. A decade ago Muslims were, in the main, observed and viewed through the lens of fundamentalism. A decade on they’ve come to be observed and seen through the prism of violent extremism and terrorism. The preoccupation with the actions of a tiny violent minority and a small though vocal provocative fringe, has come to eclipse the everyday achievements of the British Muslim majority.”

“The media bears a degree of responsibility for this state of affairs and it is worth remarking on the recommendations of the Leveson Inquiry established by the Prime Minister,” he said and added, “It is our hope that the sealing of the Royal Charter will usher in an era of a fairer portrayal of British Muslims in our media; devoid of distortion and bias.”

As for The Conservative Party, Versi mentioned, “William Hague when Leader of the Party, made significant efforts to turn the Party around and began to demonstrate a greater understanding of Britain’s diverse communities. It was under William Hague’s leadership of the Party that we saw Britain’s first Muslim member of the European Parliament, Bashir Khanbhai. Now we have two British Muslims in the European Parliament, both from Conservative Party, Sajjad Karim and Syed Kamall.”

Speaking about the changes brought under the leadership of David Cameron, Versi mentioned, “There are now two Conservative peers of the Muslim faith and one of them, Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, was the first Muslim cabinet Minister. During the last elections, for the first time, two Muslim standing for the Conservative Party were elected in the House of Commons, Sajid Javid and Rehman Chisti. There are also six Muslim MPs from the Labour Party. The visibility of British Muslims in our political and public institutions is transforming, in small but significant ways, the negative stereotyping we have all witnessed in recent years.”

Versi also mentioned about their contribution and their faithful service. “Their contributions, their presence and their faithful service is a matter of deep pride in our community. Let us recognise that too here tonight.”

Versi also mentioned about a few interventions we have seen under the leadership of our Prime Minister. He said, “The Prime Minister welcomed the World Islamic Economic Forum to the UK last October. For first time the Forum has been held outside a Muslim majority country. At the Forum, the Prime Minister announced the issuing of the UK’s first ever Sukuk, to the value of 200 million pounds.”

“The Prime Minister also outlined plans for the development of Shari’ah compliant student loans, to ensure that British Muslim students are able to take full advantage of the UK’s world-class Higher Education Institutions. The Prime Minister further announced funds for seed capital for Muslim entrepreneurs, recognising the potential for growth in Islamic finance and industry. An industry that is set to grow to £1.3 trillion this year,” Versi mentioned.
. .
Speaking about the Help to Buy Mortgage scheme, Versi said, “The Government’s, Help to Buy mortgage scheme, has now been extended to include a Shari’a compliant alternative to mortgages, the Home Purchase Plans. The development of Islamic finance has been covered by The Muslim News since the paper’s inception 25 years ago.”

Winners and Presenters of Award for Excellence
This Awards ceremony is about recognising those individuals who aspire to attain their very best as members of the British Muslim society. It is those British Muslims and non-Muslims that have proven themselves worthy of recognition for their contribution to Britain that we are here to honour this evening.

Ummul Mu'minin Khadijah Award for Excellence in Enterprise was awarded to Shabir Randeree. This Award was presented by Prime Minister David Cameron, M.P. Ibn Battuta Award for Excellence in Media was awarded to Roohi Hasan. This Award was presented by Attorney General Dominic Grieve, QC., M.P. Annemarie Schimmel Award for Championing a Muslim Cause was given to Charlotte Fischer.  This Award was presented by Mahmood Al-Najar, Chairman, The Prestige Group, main sponsor for the evening.

Alhambra Award for Excellence in Arts was awarded to Hatiq Mohammed. This Award was presented to him by Mahmood Al-Najar, Chairman, The Prestige Group. Malcolm X Young Person’s Award for Excellence was given to Ahsan Raza Choudhury. This Award was presented by Dr. Nizar Merali, Trustee, Al-Salaam Centre.

Alija Izetbegovic Award for Good Citizenship was given to Dr. Kaneez Shaid. This Award was presented by Simon Hughes, M.P., Minister of State at the Ministry of Justice. Uthman Dan Fodio Award for Excellence in Community Development was awarded to QED. The Award was presented by Zaid Al-Rawni, Head of Communications, Islamic Relief.

Al Biruni Award for Excellence in Community Relations was awarded to Zulfi Karim. This Award was presented by Judge Khurshid Drabu, Professor of Law at Middlesex University and Judge at Upper Tribunal. Sankore University Award for Excellence in Education was given to Tauheedul Islam Girls’ High School. This Award was presented by Sadiq Khan, MP., Shadow Justice Secretary and Shadow Lord Chancellor. He is also Shadow Minister for London.

Ibn Sina Award for Health was awarded to Dr. Rawan Abdulla Khwalleh. This Award was presented by Gareth Thomas, MP, Shadow Minister for Europe. Fazlur Rahman Khan for Excellence in Engineering, Science or Technology was awarded to Dr Farid Khan.  This Award was presented by Abdirashid Duale, CEO, Dhabshiil.

Faezeh Hashemi Award for Excellence in Sport was given to Mo Farah. Imams Hasan and Husayn Children's Award for Excellence was awarded to Ahmad Saleh. This Award was presented by Dr. Manazir Ahsan, Chairman, Muslim Aid.

Imam wa Amal Special Award was given to Ola Lawal, Afro-Caribbean. This Award was presented to her by Professor Dr Haifa Takruri-Rizk, chair of the Independent Panel of Judges.

The Editor’s Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Professor Dawud Olatokunbo Shittu Noibi. This award was presented to him by Ahmed J. Versi, Editor The Muslim News.

The Muslim News continues to be the largest circulating, not only Muslim newspaper but ethnic paper too, reaching over 150,000 people in the UK and the website receives up to 1.5 million hits a month.

muslim news

David Cameron at the Muslim News event