It will also increase the quantum of monthly zakat financial assistance payouts by S$30 from August, Chief Executive Abdul Razak Maricar announced.
SINGAPORE: The Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS) will disburse about S$1.9 million to the poor and needy this Ramadan, a 12.2 per cent increase from last year, it announced on Friday (Jun 9).
A total of S$1.69 million will be disbursed to 13,525 recipients of the Ramadan bonus, and S$226,700 for programmes in Ramadan for zakat (tithe)-receiving families as well as gift hampers for Hari Raya celebrations.
The Ramadan bonus for one person is set at S$150 and households with more than one person will receive S$120, the council said.
The Ramadan disbursement is paid out from the annual zakat collection, which MUIS administers for the Muslim community in Singapore. This year’s Ramadan bonus was paid out from Thursday.
INCREASE IN MONTHLY ZAKAT ASSISTANCE
On Friday, MUIS Chief Executive Abdul Razak Maricar also announced that the monthly zakat financial assistance for poor and needy families would also be increased in quantum by S$30 from August.
This change would result in a projected increase of S$1.4 million, or 15 per cent, in total expenditure for the poor and needy, MUIS said.
In his speech at the Ramadan disbursement ceremony, Mr Abdul said S$18.4 million of S$38 million zakat donations collected from the community in 2016 were distributed to the poor and needy through monthly financial assistance, the Empowerment Partnership Programme (EPS) and other supporting programmes offered at the mosques. Zakat is also used to support Islamic learning for recipients and needy madrasah students.
MUIS’ head of Social Development Muzaiyanah Hamzah said the increase in the quantum of monthly zakat financial assistance is the result of an annual review to look at how to better support vulnerable families.
“The discipline of reviewing the quantum is to ensure that we respond accordingly to the needs of the vulnerable families, so we take into consideration the rate of inflation and the rising cost of living. This is to ensure that every family is supported sufficiently.”
She added that aside from the Ramadan bonus and gift hampers that will be distributed, the mosque fraternity will conduct programmes such as home makeovers and buying clothes and goodies for zakat recipients in preparation for Hari Raya.