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Zakat management: The crisis of confidence in zakat agencies and the legality of giving zakat directly to the poor

Musa Yusuf Owoyemi (Department of Civilization and Philosophy, School of Languages, Civilization and Philosophy, College of Arts and Sciences, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Changlun, Malaysia)

Journal of Islamic Accounting and Business Research

ISSN: 1759-0817

Article publication date: 20 January 2020

Issue publication date: 20 January 2020

2231

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to look at Zakat management and the crisis of confidence in the ability of the state and zakat agencies to dispense zakat to the rightful beneficiaries as mentioned in the Quran. Confidence is a very important element between the payers and collectors of zakat and when this is lost, it affects the willingness of the payers to give zakat to the zakat collectors (state or zakat agency). This crisis of confidence led to the need to look at the legality of the payer giving zakat directly to the beneficiaries and whether this is a sin as argued in certain quarters.

Design/methodology/approach

Using the qualitative method by using historical, analytical and critical tools, the research examines the concept of proximity in the distribution of zakat and based on this argues that giving zakat directly to the beneficiaries is a viable option when there is a crisis of confidence between the payer and the state or zakat agency.

Findings

Through the analysis of the opinions of scholars, the research affirms that scholars are divided on whether to pay zakat to the state or give it directly to the beneficiaries. Based on this, the research concludes that although the ideal is to give zakat to the state or zakat agency, but there is no sin in giving zakat directly to the beneficiaries especially where there is a problem of confidence in the state and/or zakat agency.

Research limitations/implications

The research discussed the legality of giving zakat to the recipients of zakat directly using the historical, analytical and critical tools. This shows that the research is qualitative in nature and is library based therefore limited in scope. Basically, this research is concerned with refuting the claim that it is a sin for zakat payers to give zakat directly to the recipients especially when there is a problem of trust in zakat agencies and a crisis of confidence in the ability of these agencies to do what is right with the zakat funds. This leaves room for further research on the issue.

Practical implications

It is important to create confidence in zakat agencies' collection and distribution of zakat so that it will encourage more Muslims to pay their zakat and allow it to reach as many people as possible. Encouraging the creation of a vetting organization by Muslim professional accountants and others that can help in making zakat agencies transparent and trustworthy.

Social implications

It emphasizes the importance of trust and confidence that institutions must project for the people to do business with them.

Originality/value

The research contributes to the body of knowledge on zakat collection and distribution. It shows the importance of trust and confidence in zakat management and recommended ways in which trust and confidence could be built in the effective collection and distribution of zakat.

Keywords

Citation

Owoyemi, M.Y. (2020), "Zakat management: The crisis of confidence in zakat agencies and the legality of giving zakat directly to the poor", Journal of Islamic Accounting and Business Research, Vol. 11 No. 2, pp. 498-510. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIABR-07-2017-0097

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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