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February 22, 2007

Seventh Muslim News Awards for Excellence ceremony

The Seventh Muslim News Awards for Excellence, designed to showcase both Muslim and non-Muslim achievements in the British society, will be held in central London on Wednesday 4 April.

The award ceremony and gala dinner, now in its seventh year, holds great significance in the British Muslim Calendar. The coveted ceremony provides an exclusive platform for recognition and promotion of excellence amongst British Muslims at a time when their positive contributions to society may seem increasingly under-recognised.

Ahmed J Versi, Editor of The Muslim News says:

“Our ceremony is a unique opportunity to showcase Muslim and non-Muslim successes and to identify role models of the future. The evening also aims to counter misperceptions and negative images that are being portrayed in the media.”

Muslims have frequented news headlines consistently in the past year. In the face of continuing challenges, The Muslim News readers nominated their role models from and associated with the Muslim community.

Nominations for awards were taken from 14 different categories of Muslim achievements, ranging from science and engineering to community development, young person and the arts.

According to Versi:

“The Muslim News Awards recognises the achievements of unsung heroes and heroines. These awards are to honour those who make this country a beacon for others to emulate.”

The ceremony brings together politicians, religious leaders, journalists, community activists along with representatives from the world of sport, public services, culture, academia, and others under one roof, with the aim of encouraging and collectively inspiring individuals to recognise and embrace the diversity and talent displayed within the British Community.

Amongst the nominees shortlisted are:

Halima Cassell nominated for the arts. Her art fuses her Asian roots with a fascination for African pattern work and a passion for architectural geometry. Sir Sigmund Sternberg has been nominated for championing a Muslim cause award. Sir Sigmund Sternberg founded the Three Faiths Forum which has achieved enormous success in promoting respect, cooperation and friendship between Jewish, Christian and Muslim communities across the UK.

Other nominees include Isola Akay for sports award, Emdad Rahman good citizenship award, Pari Rashid for community development award, Dr Naveed Zaidi, for engineering, science and technology, Zubeida Malik, reporter for Radio 4’s Today programme for the media award and Tariq Ramadan for his contribution to Islamic thought.

The monthly newspaper launched its first awards ceremony in 2000, to mark the 10th anniversary of publication as Britain’s leading Muslim newspaper, when the guest of honour was International Development Secretary Clare Short.

Following on, the Awards for Excellence has been attended by high profile guests including Prime Minister Tony Blair, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown and His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales.

Nominations from Britain's 1.8 million Muslim community are made by members of the public and the shortlist and winners are decided by an independent panel of seven distinguished judges.

The judging panel for this year were: Dr Kamal Tawfik Elhelbawy is an advisor at the Centre for the Study of Terrorism (UK) and at the Global Civilisations Study Centre in London; Sabera Islam has over 20 years of community development experience during which time she has set up a number of Government-funded projects in Scotland; Dr Fatima Zohra is a local government information manager; Dr Hassan Abedin is a Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies; Fatima Walji advises on benefits and entitlements for vulnerable sectors of the community; Lord Mohamed Sheikh is the Chairman of the Conservative Muslim Forum; Dr Doreen Finneron is the Executive Director of the Faith Based Regeneration Network UK.

The finalists will be announced on Wednesday 4 April.

Full list of the shortlisted people is on our website:

For further information contact us on 020 8863 8586 or 077 68 241 325. Please acknowledge The Muslim News when using the press release

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