Nov 11, 2010, 11:13 AM
Welfare and Protocol Committee of the Pipeline Mosque Foundation has decided to
operate a ZAKAT HOUSE (BaI’tul Mal) to help the Muslim ‘Ouma’ in The Gambia and
abroad, to deposit their annual zakat for distribution to the needy.
This is the first time the Pipeline Mosque welfare committee has introduced such an all-encompassing initiative in its service to humanity.
This, the committee noted, serves a two-track approach, as the initiative is out to help the well-to-do Muslims in The Gambia and abroad to fulfill the Islamic principle of Zakat, as well as to create an avenue for generating support for the needy.
“This is in line with one of the most important principles of Islam, that is, all things belong to Allah, and that wealth is, therefore, held by human beings in trust. Therefore, our possessions are purified by setting aside a proportion for those in need,” the Committee said in a statement sent to this paper yesterday.
The Welfare and Protocol Committee of the Pipeline Mosque Foundation was setup principally to seek funds to help poor and deprived individuals, and also provide much-needed resources to social welfare institutions like hospitals, prisons and mental health centres in The Gambia.
“The giving of annual Zakat - also known as Zakah - by Muslims is one of the five fundamental pillars of Islam,” the committee said.
“It is obligatory for every sane and mature Muslim to give an annual payment of 2.5% whenever there is an economic activity resulting in the net increase in their wealth. This rate applies to cash, bank savings, gold and silver jewellery and other wealth, including traded goods and agricultural produce.
“The Qur’an states that those who pay Zakat are in the ‘brotherhood of faith’. Zakat not only purifies the property of the contributor, but also purifies the heart from selfishness and greed. It also purifies the heart of the recipient from envy and jealousy, from hatred and uneasiness and it fosters instead goodwill and warm wishes for the contributors.”
The Welfare and Protocol Committee recognizes that many Muslim individuals who would like to fulfill the provision of Zakat obligations are constrained by time to identify and distribute Zakat due to people who desperately need it.
“Pipeline Mosque Welfare and Protocol Committee has the administrative capability and experience through its committed ‘Help-the Poor’ programmes and activities,” a statement by the committee said, adding that it is for these reasons the Pipeline Mosque decided to formally set up the ‘BaI’tul Mal’ (Zakat House) to render assistance to those who would want Zakat distributed on their behalf.
In helping people, to meet this fundamental obligation, the committee would want to assure that deposits to the ‘BaI’tul Mal’ “will never be used for other purposes, but to be distributed solely for the direct benefit of ‘masakeens’ and ‘fuquarawas’ in conformity with Islamic requirements”.
The committee stated that individuals can deposit Zakat to the ‘BaI’tul Mal’ dedicated bank account or by contacting and reaching out to the following officials of the Zakat House: Imam Pa Njie, Pipeline Mosque Zakat House: Tel. +220-9877952; Alh. Samba Saye, Treasurer: Tel. +220-7617018; and Mr Mam Sait Njie, Chairman, Welfare Committee: Tel. +220-9905040.