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Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Malaysia: People Need To Know How Zakat Collection Is Spent - Jamil

KUALA LUMPUR, May 19 (Bernama)-- The people, especially Muslims, need to know how the zakat (tithe) collection is spent to raise their confidence in the institutions managing the fund.

Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Jamil Khir Baharom said he would study how the information could be disseminated through the media, especially television.

"There must be transparency in how the zakat collection is spent to raise public confidence, so that more will feel encouraged to pay zakat," he said after witnessing the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Wakaf (Endowment Land), Zakat and Haj Department (JAWHAR) and UKM Holdings Sdn Bhd, here, Tuesday.

He said those who had become successful through assistance from the zakat fund must be highlighted in the media so that they became role models for society.

"We should show how from being zakat recipients, they have become successful and are now paying zakat, hence creating public understanding how zakat can contribute to the community's socio-economic development."

In another development, Jamil Khir also chaired the National Baitulmal Coordinating Committee meeting organised by JAWHAR today.

Among the matters discussed, he said, was coordinating the tasks and responsibilities of the state Islamic religious councils and related bodies to avoid overlapping and confusion.

"Six working papers containing proposals to improve the socio-economic status of Muslims in Malaysia, especially in relation to wakaf, zakat and mal (property) were also presented."

Jamil Khir said the meeting also decided that a Zakat Awareness Month be organised to encourage Muslims to pay zakat other than zakat fitrah, which Muslims pay during Ramadan.

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