ISLAMABAD: PM’s Special Adviser on Political Affairs Naeemul Haque has said that the government is setting up a new Ministry of Poverty Alleviation, under which ‘Ehsaas’ programme will be launched for the benefit of the poor.
Haq also said that the ruling class has created a society for itself which protects its own socio-economic interest that ignores those of the poor. “I believe the present economic, political, and social system in Pakistan does not offer solutions to the problems it has created,” he added.
He further said that “we want to completely change the face of our society. We know the poor have been denied the benefits of this wealth.”
He was addressing to the 13th Citi-PPAF Microentrepreneurship Awards Ceremony which was held at Serena Hotel to celebrate outstanding microentrepreneurs across Pakistan, equip them to expand their businesses, and raise awareness of the impact of small businesses on communities and economies.
Qazi Asmat Isa, CEO of PPAF, while addressing the ceremony said that more than 450 exceptional microentrepreneurs have been recognized through the Citi-PPAF Microentrepreneurship Awards. They displayed hard work and leadership qualities, changing their lives and those of their communities in the process of their work.
Nadeem Lodhi, Citi Country Officer & Managing Director of Citi Pakistan said the Citi- PPAF Microentrepreneurship Awards in Pakistan have shown great success, indicating the continuous development of the finance sector of Pakistan and demonstrating the benefits communities receive when microentrepreneurs are supported, whether they are in rural Kashmir or bustling Karachi.
The Deputy Governor of the State Bank, Jamil Ahmed, Engineer Daroo Khan Achakzai, President of FPCCI, Yusuf Hussain, CEO of Ignite and Humair Kari, Additional Secretary, the ministry of planning also talked about the importance of partnerships and economic growth and congratulated the entrepreneurs.
During the ceremony, microentrepreneurs received awards in various categories. Nadeem Akhtar won the award for ‘Best National Microentrepreneur Male’ while Sakina Bibi won the award in the female category.
Nadeem has significantly grown his business of rural transport by making smart investments and using loans, going from living hand-to-mouth to acquiring key financial stability.
Sakina Bibi established a washing machine plant using savings and loans and has provided for her son’s laundry shop. She began by washing clothes of neighbouring households and now provides employment for four other individuals.
Bashir Ahmad and Aneela Abbas emerged winners in the ‘National Winners- Novice’ category. Bashir supports a household of seven people. He runs a business selling miswak, generating employment for nine other persons.
Aneela Abbas runs a beauty salon in Layyah district and provides employment as well as training for local women so they can run their businesses and earn for themselves.
Awards were also given to microentrepreneurs who have positively impacted their communities through their work. Recognition awards were also given to respective loan officers who helped their clients recognise their potential.
The winners were selected from the shortlisted nominees after a detailed interview by eminent jury panels drawn from corporate and development sector organisations, including International Finance Corporation World Bank Group, FAO, and Pakistan Microfinance Network.