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By Kazeem Awojoodu, Ibadan.

The Companion, Oyo State District, an association of Muslim Men in Business and its profession, on Sunday supported fourteen Small Scale Business owners with equipment, goods and other materials worth Two Million (N2m) to establish and boost their businesses.

The Amir of the Companion, Oyo District, Alhaji Nurayn Zakariyah, while speaking at the annual Zakat Distribution event, held at MUSWEN Secretariat, Iwo-Road, Ibadan, Oyo state, said the Companion right from the national body to district, annually do distribute (Zakat) alms giving to the less privilege across all districts so as to ameliorate poverty among the masses.

He said: The initiative is behind what Allah (SW) commands, Islam is a complete religion, it takes care of our spiritual life and takes care of our economic life as well.

Zakat is one of the pillars of Islam for whoever can pay Zakat, so every year; companion right from the national body,we pay Zakat and distribute it across all the district. Oyo district has a share of the Zakat that was collected right from the center.

He explained that the association distributed One Million, Five Hundred Thousand Naira (N1,500.000) cash to ten beneficiaries last year, noting that in this year, they decided not to give cash to beneficiaries but to support them with items of their choices.

According to him,”we had 10 beneficiaries and this year we have 14 beneficiaries and what we distributed, we moderated our activities right from the planning stage. Last year we gave out cash outrightly to all the beneficiaries but this year because of the economic situation in the country, we decided that we are not going to give cash but support all the beneficiaries to buy items of their choices. So, we gave them a form which they filled and they also indicated the choices of what they wanted on the form and this was the basis by which the items were bought and presented to them.

Zakariyah, described Zakat as a way of re- distributing wealth among members of the society, admonished government to emulate the association by prioritizing empowerment programmes in order to move them from poverty to prosperity.

He therefore, enjoined the beneficiaries to utilize the items, equipment and materials distributed to them judiciously, noting they are meant to grow the business and multiply their output at the end of the day.

“My message to the beneficiaries is that today they are collecting the Zakat, this is the effort and sweat of some people, it should be in their own desire to be part of the people that pay Zakat, 2-3 years down the line, and the second thing is that whatever we are giving them today is not for them to sell off the stock and make use of the money, they are meant to grow the business and also multiply their output at the end of the day. My message is very clear and they should ensure that they use the items and increase the wealth and also, they should have the desire to pay Zakat in the nearest future.

In her remarks,the Amirah of the association, Professor Monrufat Balogun of University of Ibadan, said collective effort is required by both the donor and beneficiaries of Zakat in order to fulfill its basis as contained in the Holy Quran.

She urged the beneficiaries to make focus their watch word and put necessary efforts into their businesses to attain greater heights.

Speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries, Mrs Olayiwola Sofiat and Br.Babatunde Kazeem,appreciated the companion for supporting their businesses and ameliorating their suffering.

The duo, promised that all items received from the association will be judiciously utilize, praying that God will continue to be with the association.

The event had in attendance, National Auditor, Alhaji Misbahudeen Alabi, National Assistant Secretary, Alhaji Abdul Kabiru Lawal,Secretary, Oyo district, Br.Munirudeen Olori Aje,Chairman Zonal Committee,Alhaji Abdul Wakeel Olaniyi and other members of Association.


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