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Sajjad M Rashid

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Birth Date: March 10, 1947

Brief Profile

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With profound sense of courage, some dedicated individuals consistently have gone above and beyond the bounds to uplift and support their fellow community members. These personalities have dedicated their lives to serve the community and humanity at large. Indeed their exemplary service and selflessness is an inspiration to all, embodying the spirit of community leadership and making a lasting difference in the lives of those they serve. Alhaj Hon. Sajjad Rashid is one of these individuals with unwavering commitment and determination who demonstrated the very best of dedication in the face of adversity.

Sajjad bhai was born in Mombasa, Kenya on 10th March 1947 to Alhaj Mohamedali Rashid Muraj and Mariambai Kassamali Moledina. His siblings were Ashikhussein Mohamedali Rashid, Fatma Remtullah and Gulzar Walji.

Life Journey

He completed his primary education at Kaloleni Primary School and secondary education at Allidina Visram High School. Thereafter, in 1965, Sajjadbhai joined his maternal uncles at their general merchandise company, which was known as Roshanali & Company. Later in 1980, he established a business known as M. S. Bawazir & Company and ventured in to the international business in grains, sugar, and other goods in partnership with Mr. Mohamed Bawazir, a Mombasan businessman. Subsequently in 2000, he entered into the construction and manufacturing business in Mombasa and Dubai by establishing various companies which are now managed by the family members with Sajjadbhai having retired from day to day active participation in business. He is also the Chairman of Milly Group of Companies.

His Family

Sajjad bhai got married to Sherbanubai Gulamabbas Moledina in 1967, Taherabai Roshanali Ahmed Bandali in 1983 and Saida bai Kassim Sheikh in 1987. He has been blessed with 7 children: Fehmida Kanji, Mohamedraza, Alia, Mohamedali, Mohamedazeem, Mohamedkumeil and Zahra.

Awards & Achievements

Sajjadbhai has been actively involved in a number of philanthropic endeavors and humanitarian initiatives for which he has received various honors. The Eye Services Foundation of Pakistan gave him a Certificate for Commendation for conducting an Eye Camp in Mombasa in 1986 –1987. Additionally, he received an award from Lions Club Pwani and Mombasa Island for his exceptional work at the Lions Eye Camp in 1990. His selfless devotion for humanity outshined on his previous achievements of Sitara-i-Khidmat for the seaborne evacuation of refugees from Somalia in 1991.

In 1992, Sajjad bhai was nominated as a ‘Member of Parliament’ by the President of Kenya, a position he held till 2002. He also served as Executive Chairman of Kenya Port of Authority from 1994 - 1995 and was appointed Assistant Minister for Research & Technology in the Cabinet of His Excellency Daniel Moi for the term 1995 - 1997. Sajjad bhai received the title "Elder of the Burning Spear" and a medal in recognition of his meritorious services to the nation of Kenya and also received the title "Chief of the Burning Spear” medal. Furthermore, he also attained the certificate of recognition from Lions Club of Mombasa Central for his services to the less fortunate and a certificate of appreciation in 2002 which was awarded by Lions Club Pwani.

Sajjad bhai was awarded the Kaukabe Khidmat Award for his selfless services by World Federation of KSI Muslim Communities and Mulla Asghar Award for his exemplary services to earthquake victims in Kutch and Gujrat in 2002. Furthermore, he received the prestigious Hydery Medal for his dedicated voluntary services by the Federation of KSI Jamaats of Africa. Beside community services, Sajjad bhai enjoyed playing Squash.

Community Services

Sajjadbhai has held a number of key positions in the community. He was the Chairman of Khoja Shia lthna-Asheri Jamaat of Mombasa from 1986 – 1992 and again from 2011 – 2015. He has held the position as a Trustee of the Khoja Shia lthna-Asheri Jamaat, Mombasa from 1974 – 1979 and 2011 – 2017, Chairman of the Education Council of the Khoja Shia lthna-Asheri, Mombasa for the term 2001 – 2004, AFED Delegate at the World Federation Conference in 2014 and 2017. Furthermore, he had been a Councillor of Africa Federation from 2011 – 2016 and currently is an elected Councillor of Mombasa Jamaat. Presently, Sajjadbhai is the Trustee of KSI Jamaat of Mombasa and the Chairman of Jaffery Medical Welfare Assistance Board.

Somalia & Yemen Rescue Mission

In January, 1991, with a team of 19 volunteers Sajjadbhai undertook a sea-born exercise and went to Mogadishu in a chartered vessel and rescued 1,257 people including the High Commissioner of Pakistan and his family trapped over in Mogadishu due to Civil War in Somalia and brought them to safety in Mombasa. This exercise lasted for 27 days. Furthermore, he also arranged evacuation of about 60 people by Air from Mogadishu to Nairobi.

Similarly, Sajjad bhai was also actively involved in the Rescue Mission of Yemen where he led the rescue exercise to evacuate the people trapped in Yemen due to the Civil War and foreign intervention. The first mission took place in April 2015 where 456 people were rescued from Hodeida and brought safely to Djibouti; in the second mission more individuals were evacuated from Hodeida and brought safely to Djibouti. Both the missions took place in a dhow like ship known locally as Sumbuk.

During the Somalia and Yemen rescue missions, Sajjad bhai’s heroic actions exemplified altruism and courage. His indomitable spirit and stanch commitment to the mission was an inspiration to his comrades who served alongside him. In the face of relentless danger and hardship, with his exceptional leadership, he led his team through daring operations, and played a pivotal role in the successful evacuation of stranded Khoja members, ensuring their safety amidst a challenging and perilous situation. His determination, resourcefulness, and valor demonstrated the very best of abilities and has forever left an indelible mark on the hearts and minds of those he rescued and the community at large. We pray to Allah (SWT) to amply reward Alhaj Sajjad bhai for his noble efforts and to bless him with longevity and good health and increase in his tawfeeqaat so that he may continue to serve the community and humanity at large in the way of Allah (SWT), Ameen.

We also pray to the Almighty to bless the soul of Marhum Alhaj Ashik Rashid, the brother of Sajjad bhai, who also played a crucial role along with Sajjad bhai in the rescue missions; A request for Sura-e-Fateha for Marhum Alhaj Ashik Rashid and all the Marhumeen who took part in the rescue mission who are no longer in this transient world.

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Africa Federation Archives Section

On 13th May 2023, Alhaj Sajjad bhai on his visit to Dar es Salaam was invited by the Africa Federation Archives Section to visit the Archives Gallery which is located on the 3rd floor of AFED Tower in Dar es Salaam. He was received by the AFED Secretariat and members of the Archives Section of AFED. It was a great opportunity to meet and learn from Murabbi Sajjadbhai about his great services to the community and humanity at large. He was also interviewed by the Archives Section of Africa Federation. Sajjad Bhai Rashid and his son Mohammed (Mammu) have been great supporters of Africa Federation in several projects, especially in education for which Africa Federation are grateful for their support.

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Article prepared by: AFED Archives Secretariat/Inputs by Alhaj Mohamedraza Rashid.

Date: 10th June 2023 (21st Zilkaad 1444 A.H.)