Prestigious Muslim community award for Oxford vaccine researcher

Wednesday 29th Jun 2022, 3.51pm

An Oxford researcher has been honoured by the Muslim community for her outstanding work during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sagida Bibi, Senior Postdoctoral Researcher at the Oxford Vaccine Group, received the Exceptional Covid Response Award at the recent Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2022 at a London hotel.

Head of Action for Humanity, Othman Moqbel, presented the honour.

Sagida said: ‘I am honoured to have received this award – we only achieved what we did because of the tireless efforts of the whole team working on the vaccine.

‘I also feel privileged to have worked alongside my colleagues to deliver a vaccine that has reached over 170 countries. That has always been our ethos here at the Oxford Vaccine Group and the work to tackle infectious diseases across the world continues.’

Sagida joins an illustrious list of both sung and unsung heroes, all of whom become role models for British Muslims around the country through their nomination alone.

She played a critical role in the setup of clinical trials to test the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine – overseeing a dedicated team of research assistants tackling a series of complicated logistical challenges to ensure that the vaccine could be tested in external sites, including overseas, and also enabled the efficacy readouts of the trials.

Under her stewardship, four laboratory sites for Phase 1 of the COVID-19 vaccine trial (with just over 1,100 volunteers) were set up in remarkable time – within two weeks. This is a process that would normally take months of planning.

The Muslim News Awards, in its 18th edition, aims to celebrate Muslim talent and their contributions to society. The guest of honour at the gala awards dinner was Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons.