By Al Qalam Reporter
The Minara Chamber of Commerce annual Business Recognition Awards and Gala Dinner kicked off in grand style at the NMJ Islamic Centre last weekend where many community personalities and achievers were honoured for excelling in their respective fields of work.
It was a tough call, however, seven overall winners were picked from a shortlist of achievers – from among the top 18 finalists.
The keynote speaker at the glittering event was Mufti Yusuf Suliman who gave a thought-provoking discourse on “Islamic Economy.”
Solly Suleman, President of the Minara Chamber of Commerce, said apart from those picked for the awards, ALL the finalists were considered achievers who have excelled in their businesses, their profession or had made a difference in the lives of others.
Speaking about the Chamber, Suleman added: “From the humble idea of a collective voice for small businesses, Minara has grown into a formal business organisation with footprints in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and the Western Cape.”
The Minara Business Recognition Awards was established to showcase successful independent and family-owned businesses, high-achieving professionals, hard-working community builders and stalwarts in the struggle against social injustices.
The winners were the following.
- The Lifetime Award went to community stalwart Dr A.V. Mahomed, known both locally and internationally for his leadership in various community projects, especially his involvement with the majestic Juma Musjid and interfaith programmes. In his acceptance speech, he spoke of the importance for succession planning and social involvement.
- The Business Entity Award was handed to the Capital Group. Accepting the award on behalf of the group was Director Iqlaas Ismail who thanked the Almighty and his entire team for the success of the company, adding that it was an honour to be picked as one of the winners. Finalists in this category included Alif Door Manufacturers and the Limco Group.
- The Businessperson of the Year Award went to Ahmed Mahomed, CEO of Datacentrix. High achiever finalists included Shabir Tayob of BMW Supertech Group and well-known media personality and Tabloid newspaper owner Rishaad Mahomed.
- Environmentalist, Dr Najma Mohamed was given the Professional Achiever Award. She is currently in Italy doing research work, but in a message, she thanked the Chamber for the award. The two other professionals in this category were Professor Adam Mahomed and Lawyer Mohamed Husain.
- Johannesburg Businesswoman Dimpho Aisha Majogo walked away with the Businesswoman of the Year Award. Finalists in this category included nephrologist Zulaka Khan Bobat and engineer Zeenat Ghoor, both enterprising women who were making huge contributions to their communities through their businesses
- Zainab Paruk of the Chilli Choc Chef sister duo was picked the winner in the Young Entrepreneur category. Finalist in this category was Muhammed Simjee of A2D24 and IT Solutions expert M. Taahir Shah.
- The Community Builder title was awarded to Shaykh Saleem Banda of the World Assembly of Muslim Youth. Port Elizabeth Moulana Nazir Munshie from the Al Fida Foundation and Dr Ghamiet Aysen of Durban were finalists in the Strong Community Builder category. They are currently driving successful projects that are helping to uplift communities.