Imtiaz Sooliman awarded African of the year

Dr. Imtiaz Sooliman

South African medical doctor Imtiaz Sooliman has been granted the 2023 Daily Trust African of the Year Award.

The announcement was made by the six-member selection board of the Daily Trust African of the Year on Friday.

According to a press release issued by the secretariat of the Daily Trust African of the Year Award, Sooliman was recognised as “a worthy and exemplary humanitarian”, known for his strong belief in the common humanity that unites people worldwide.

“He has guided the Gift of the Givers Foundation for more than 30 years to respond to and dispatch humanitarian and medical supplies to disaster areas on the continent and abroad,” the statement reads.

It says the foundation’s diverse interventions range from providing food parcels in impoverished South African communities to deploying search-and-rescue teams and medical specialists in response to natural and manmade disasters.

Notable instances include support in Turkey after a devastating earthquake, assistance to flood-affected communities in Komani (formerly Queenstown) in South Africa, and interventions in Libya following distressing flooding in Shahhat City.

Among the finalists considered for the award were individuals such as Qabale Duba, a Kenyan nurse/epidemiologist, Tatenda Ndambakuwa, a Zimbabwean mathematician and urban planner, and Dr Ola Orekunrin, a Nigerian medical doctor, helicopter pilot and founder of Flying Doctors Nigeria.

The award comes with a cash prize and the official presentation is scheduled to take place during the Daily Trust Dialogue in January.

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