ZAKAT and Sadaqat Foundation (ZSF) has disbursed the sum of N167,374,712 to 1,664 beneficiaries in Lagos State.
The Executive Director of the foundation, Prince Sulaiman Olagunju, said the event, held last Sunday in Ikeja, formally ended this year’s zakat distribution, which began in June across the country.
According to him, with the Lagos event, the organisation had empowered 2,647 people with N220 million under its 2019 zakat distribution.
“I am pleased to inform that the sum of N167,374,712 is being distributed to 1,664 beneficiaries in Lagos State to formally end this year’s zakat distribution that began in June across the nation.
“The amount being disbursed here today is about N25 million more than that of last year that stood at N142,938,905 in the state,” he said.
Olagunju said with the support of zakat payers and other well-meaning individuals, the foundation was able to increase the number of states where zakat was distributed from 17 in 2018 to 21 this year.
He said the four new states where the foundation distributed zakat funds in 2019 were Kogi, Nazarawa, Niger and Zamfara.
“It is noteworthy that despite the economic situation of the country, we were able to move up zakat collection from N318,152,130 at the end of October 2018 to N325,346,697 as at September 2019.
“The amount of zakat disbursed so far this year, including the one being distributed today, across the 21 states stands at N220,348,391 to 2,647 beneficiaries.
“This shows a slight increase of about N16 million above last year’s disbursement,” he added.
Speaking earlier, the chairman of the Board of Trustees of the foundation, Dr Tajudeen Yusuf, described the collection and distribution of zakat as an obligation that all Muslims owe to Allah.
“In the same vein, we as recipients must see this as an opportunity to improve our circumstance from being needy to being on the path of prosperity,” Yusuf said.
He said the activities of the foundation as a non-governmental organisation were geared towards contributing to nation-building.
“Just like the experience in the conventional tax collection, there is the need to widen the zakat payer bracket. There are still many able Muslims who may not know that a foundation like ours, which collects and distributes zakat, exists.
“It is, therefore, the duty of our current payers to introduce us to this category of Muslims,” he said.
Also speaking at the event, the Executive Director of Jaiz Charity and Development Foundation, Dr Abdullah Shuaib, called for collaboration between the Zakat and Sadaqat Foundation and the Lagos State government towards alleviating poverty among the populace.
He urged the foundation to liaise with the state Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation in this regard.
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