THE Zakat and Sadaqat Foundation (ZSF) has distributed empowerment items and cash worth N3 million to more than 50 underprivileged people in Kwara State.
The items distributed to some of the beneficiaries include motorcycles, deep freezers, industrial sewing machines and car washing machines. The others received cash ranging from N50,000 to N100,000.
At the event, the state coordinator of the ZSF, Dr Muhammad Thanni Muhammad Muktar, said the programme was aimed at putting smiles on the faces of the underprivileged.
According to Muhammad Muktar, the foundation, which was established in 2001 as a non-governmental organisation, aims at bridging the gap between the rich and the poor.
He said: “You can see from what happened here today that we got the money from the rich and we disbursed it to the poor in cash and materials like sewing machines, deep freezers and car washing machine. Over N3 million was disbursed today and as long as we get the money, the exercise will be a continuous one.
“For this year, we based our selection on education, health and empowerment. In fact, there are some who came for education purposes. We still have to empower them because we discovered the need for such gesture through our interaction with them during the interviews.”
The ZSF coordinator said the gesture was in line with the dictates of Islam and urged the beneficiaries to make the most of the gesture so as to liberate themselves from poverty and take care of their dependants.
He explained that the ZSF was established for the purpose of reviving the culture of observing of the most neglected pillar of Islam and improving the welfare of the underprivileged.
In a remark, the Executive Director of the foundation, Prince Sulayman Olagunju, said the main objective of the foundation was to return zakat to its rightful position among Muslims and ensure even distribution of wealth for the empowerment of the underprivileged.
Represented at the event by Executive Director, Sakat, Sadaqot and Waqfu Foundation, Alhaji Ma’ruf Ahmad, Prince Olagunju listed community development projects, scholarships for orphans and indigent students and assistance for widows as other areas of focus for the foundation.
He urged the beneficiaries to see the items they received as a trust by making judicious use of them to achieve desired goals.
In a lecture, Dr Yahaya Muritador from the Kwara State University, Malete, described zakat as a veritable tool for not only purification of wealth but also for redistribution of wealth.
He commended members of the foundation for what he described as the great jobs they were doing, praying God to reward them.
Also speaking, Ustaz Yusuf Muritala Pakata said if the tenets of zakat were properly followed, it would reduce poverty, hunger and insecurity in the country.
While appreciating the foundation for doing a good job, he called on other organisations to emulate it.
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