Dr. Muhammad Amjad Saqib
Dr. Muhammad Amjad Saqib is a development practitioner, public servant, philanthropist and founder of Akhuwat, world’s largest interest-free microfinance program. His professional expertise and employment history include public management, poverty alleviation, social development, governance and educational reform in Pakistan.
Having graduated from King Edward Medical University, Dr. Saqib started his career by joining the esteemed civil service of Pakistan in 1985. He served at various high-level government positions including Punjab Rural Support Program (PRSP), a rural development and microfinance initiative by government of Punjab for seven years. The program aimed at social mobilization, community organization and provision of financial access to the poor. Concluding that an alternative method is needed to cater to the needs of the poor, he decided to resign from the civil service and dedicate his life to the mission of creating a poverty-free society by founding Akhuwat.
Dr. Saqib resigned from Civil Service in 2003 and founded Akhuwat the same year. He has been its CEO and main driving force since beginning. With seventeen years of successful operations, Akhuwat now presents a viable model of Shariah-compliant microfinance, which is both sustainable and replicable. Besides Akhuwat, Dr. Saqib is voluntarily serving many civil society organizations in the realm of education, health, disability, banking and finance. He is also on the board of a commercial bank and a few public universities. Besides his pro-bono services, Dr. Saqib regularly provides consultancy to various international development agencies including the Asian Development Bank (ADB), International Labor Organization (ILO), UNICEF, World Bank, Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), USAID and Foreign Common Wealth and Development Office (FCDO, previously DFID) and different public sector organizations in Pakistan.
Dr. Saqib has a diverse educational background. Besides degree in medicine, he received his master’s degree in Public Administration from The American University, Washington D.C, USA. He has spoken at highly esteemed international forums including Harvard, Oxford and United Nations Economic and Social Council (UN-ECOSOC). Dr. Saqib is a prolific writer and has authored nine books available on his website.
- MBBS from King Edward Medical College, Lahore – 1982
- Bachelors from University of Punjab, Lahore – 1984
- Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship in Public Administration – 1994
- Masters in Public Administration (MPA) from School of International Studies, the American University Washington, D.C. USA – 1995
- 2006 – present Consultant, various organisations (DFID, EDC/USAID, CIDA, ILO, World Bank, ADB, Lahore University of Management Sciences, University of Central Punjab)
- 1998 – 2005 General Manager, Punjab Rural Support Program, Pakistan
- 1995 – 1997 Director, Punjab Middle Schooling Project, Government of Punjab, Pakistan
- 1987 – 1995 Various senior management positions in Government of Punjab (District Management Group), Pakistan
- Punjab Health Foundation, Consultant for developing interest free loan scheme for doctors and allied health professional (October 2016 to December 2016)
- Adam Smith International, Advisor – The Punjab Education Sector Programme II (PESP 2) is DFID’s one of the largest education investments in the world, both in terms of its scale and its aspirations. In just three years, it aimed to improve education access and quality for over 20 million children in Punjab, and simultaneously show substantial improvements in their learning outcomes. (January 2015 to April 2017)
- World Bank, Consultant – Providing technical expertise for development of Islamic Finance in Manila and Mindanao, Philippine. (on need basis)
- University of Central Punjab, Advisor – Social Entrepreneurship, Poverty Alleviation and Rural Development (April 2013 to date)
- USAID – Teacher Education Project – EDC Senior Provincial Director USAID – Teacher Education Project, Punjab, Pakistan (Dec 2011 to July 2013)
- Asian Development Bank, Policy Advisor RBM Unit, Govt. of the Punjab (July 2011 to Dec 2011)
- Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Project Director for Canada Pakistan Basic Education Project – CPBEP (June 2007 to July 2011).
- Assessment of Capacity and Capacity Building Institutions in the Developing Policy Loan (DPL) Sectors, Team leader for the subject consultancy for the Urban Unit, Planning and Development Department, Govt. of the Punjab (January 2007 to May 2007).
- Asian Development Bank (ADB), Team member for implementation of Project RSC- C60936 (PAK): Country Partnership Strategy. It involved analysis of impact of devolution on various departments of the district governments i.e. education and health etc. (January 2007 to February 2007).
- Asian Development Bank (ADB), Consultant for Development of ICT based information services and distant education in rural Pakistan to support poverty reduction – Determinants and Drivers of Poverty and ADB’s contribution (December 2006 to February 2007).
- Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Social Mobilization and poverty specialist for preparing and writing Devolved Health Sector Practitioner’s Manual. (October 2006 to September 2007).
- Asian Development Bank and Decentralization Support Programme, Senior Training Coordinator for a training programme, pertaining to local governance and devolution, to more than 4500 nazims and members of zila (district) and tehsil (sub-district) councils. (October 2006 to January 2007).
- International Labour Organization (ILO), Consultant for facilitating the process of formulating a project on National Crèche Fund in collaboration with Ministry of Labour and Manpower Government of Pakistan, Departments of Labour and Manpower at all four provinces and private sector/civil society stakeholders (July 2006 to Feb 2007)
- Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Senior Consultant/Task Leader to conduct study on Enhanced revenue mobilization by local government through CIDA Development Support Project (CDSP). The purpose of CDSP is to strengthen local governments through creating enabling environment for local governments and citizen’s participation; capacity building of local governments in planning, decision making and resource mobilization; and through improved, accessible, accountable and sustainable service delivery at the local level. (November 2005 to April 2006).
- International Labour Organization (ILO), Team Leader Impact Assessment Study for Prevention and Elimination of Bonded Labour in South Asia (PEBLISA) – The Pak component. TP Code RAS.04/57m/net. Financing Agency, the Netherlands. (December 2005 to February 2006)
- International Labour Organization (ILO), Team Leader Impact Project Evaluation Study for Prevention and Elimination of Bonded Labour in South Asia (PEBLISA) – Pak component. TP Code RAS.04/57m/net. Financing Agency, the Netherlands. (December 2005 to February 2006)
- Asian Development Bank (ADB), Senior Resource Person-Microfinance Specialist. To assist implementation of TA 4015-Pak: Enhancing capacity for resource management and Poverty reduction in Punjab. This TA’s objectives are to primarily promote poverty focused development planning and effective use of public resources in Punjab for poverty reduction, human development, and economic growth. (March to April 2005).
- Asian Development Bank (ADB), Consultant/ Resource Person to study and suggest changes in the microfinance component of the Barani Area Development Project in NWFP. (April 2004 to July 2004)
- Punjab Rural Support Programme (PRSP), Consultant/Advisor on Social Mobilization & Micro Finance (July 2005 to Dec 2005)
- Punjab Municipal Development Fund Company (PMDFC) CONSULTANT, SOCIAL MOBILIZATION/CCB – (Jan 2005 to Dec 2006)
- Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), TASK LEADER DISTRICT SOCIAL SERVICE OFFICERS TRAINING PROGRAMME (Nov 2005 to Nov 2006)
- Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Development of teaching material for social enterprise development centre at LUMS (Jan 2006 to Jan 2008)
- Punjab Rural Support Programme (Prsp) – (Jun 1998 to Mar 2005) General Manager
- Government Of The Punjab – (Sep 1997 to May 1998) Deputy Secretary/Staff Officer To Chief Secretary, Punjab
- Government Of The Punjab – (Feb 1997 to Sep 1997) Deputy Secretary, Chief Minister’s Secretariat, Punjab
- Punjab Middle Schooling Project (Pmsp) – (Jul 1995 to Feb 1997) Project Director Pmsp
- Health Department, Government Of The Punjab. Deputy Secretary Administration – (Jul 1992 to Jul 1993)
- Punjab Education Foundation, Government Of The Punjab, Manager Development – (Jul 1991 to Jul 1992)
- Government Of The Punjab, Assistant Commissioner/Sub-Divisional Magistrate – (Apr 1987 to Jul 1991)
- Chief Executive Officer (Akhuwat Islamic Microfinance)- (Jan 2017 to date)
- Executive Director (Honorary), Akhuwat – (2001 to date)
- Vice Chairman, Punjab Educational Endowment Fund (PEEF) – (Dec 2008 to date)
- Managing Director (Honorary), Punjab Welfare Trust for Disabled (PWTD) – (Dec 2007 to date)
- Member Board of Directors Fountain House, Lahore (A project of Lahore Mental Health Association for the treatment and rehabilitation of mentally ill patients).
- Member Board of Directors the Bank of Punjab (Non NBFC)
- Member Board of Governors Pakistan Kidney & Liver Institute and Research Center and Trust.
- Member Board of Directors Pak Turk Education Foundation.
- Member Board of Directors Hum Pakistani Foundation.
- Commissioner Punjab Health Care Commission.
- Member of various reform/monitoring/working committees appointed by Government of the Punjab and Government of Pakistan:
- Member of the Committee of Management and Administrative Model, Curriculum and Human Resource for Daanish Schools
- Member of the Committee of Technical Training Programme for the Students of Deeni Madaris
- Member of the Committee for Reforms in Special Education
- Member of the Committee to analyse the existing state of Dar-ul-Amans in Paunjab
- Member of the Committee for Employment Framework for Best Pakistani Ph.D Teachers in Educational Institutes of Pakistan
- Member of the Monitoring Committee for Chief Minister’s Speech, Debate, Essay Writing and Sports Competitions Programme.
- Member Civil Society Advisory Committee (CSAC) of Wafaqi Mohtasab (Ombudsman)
- Member of the Committee regarding Permanent Rehabilitation of Beneficiaries of Punjab Food Support Programme
- Member of the Committee to review the entire role and scope of Punjab Health Foundation
- Member of the Committee for Monitoring of Implementation Status of Chief Minister’s Initiatives on Education
- Member of the Committee to strategize some positive Interventions for the Development of Women in the Province
- Member of the Working Group on Poverty Alleviation and Social Protection in Punjab
- Member of the Committee to review the initiative of Food Stamp Scheme
- Member of the Working Group of Social Safety Nets
- Member of the Committee of Working of School Councils (SCs) and Regulatory Framework for Private Schools
- Member of the Committee to Improve Services in Education Sector
- Member of the Committee of Punjab Health Strategic Plan
- Member of the Syndicate, University of the Punjab
- Member of the Committee of Punjab Day Care Fund Society
- Member of the Syndicate, University of Education
- Member of the Syndicate, Fatima Medical College
- Member of the Board of Directors of Bank of Punjab