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Update on the recent case of suspicious zakat transactions detected at Al-Istiqamah Mosque

Response to parliamentary question on the recent suspicious zakat transactions involving cash payments made at Al-Istiqamah Mosque and the governance measures in place.

Oral PQ 4996. Mr Zhulkarnain Abdul Rahim: To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development and Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs in relation to the suspicious zakat transactions detected recently at Al-Istiqamah mosque involving cash payments made by members of the public (a) how were the suspicious transactions detected; (b) what is the number of transactions and total quantum involved; and (c) what are the steps already in place or the interim measures now being put in place to ensure the proper accounting of zakat payments in the mosque and all other zakat collection centres accepting cash payments.

  1. On 19 June 2023, Muis detected several suspicious transactions involving zakat payments paid in cash at Masjid Al-Istiqamah. As police investigations are ongoing, Muis is unable to disclose more information.
  2. Governance requirements and standard operating procedures for handling cash and digital zakat payments are in place and regularly reviewed. Muis’ zakat officers and supervisors are trained on how to operate the zakat collection system and on the standard operating procedures. Regular audits are also performed to ensure adherence to proper procedures and can surface suspicious transactions, as was the
    case at Masjid Al-Istiqamah.
  3. Masjid Al-Istiqamah has temporarily suspended all zakat collections over the counter. Pending the outcome of the police investigation, Muis will review the current SOP and implement any necessary measures to further strengthen the zakat system and processes. Muis encourages zakat payers to go cashless, where possible.
Last updated on 20 September 2023