Islamic finance professionals train imams, others

THE Lagos State government has commended the Institute of Islamic Finance Professionals (IIFP) for coming up with an initiative to lessen the financial burden of Muslim scholars.

The Commissioner for Home Affairs, Dr Abdul-Hakeem Abdul-Lateef, gave the commendation during an IIFP workshop held at the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Alausa, Ikeja.

At the workshop, which had over 230 representatives of various mosques in the state, led by the five divisional imams, in attendance, Abdul-Lateef said the outcome of the event would cushion the effects of the current recession in the country among the participants and the communities they represented.

“To the Lagos State government, it is another success story to have people who continue to look for ways out of challenges. This is turning our problems to successes. You have come to increase your skills and knowledge on strategies to increase wealth among Muslim scholars. This workshop will be of immense benefits if well harnessed,” he said.

The commissioner urged Muslims to embrace the halal (lawful) way of creating wealth in an unconventional situation, saying: “The same goes for our way of viewing politics as a dirty game. Politics is not dirty but is rather populated by people who lack the fear of Allah. If many of you are into politics, our society will be better for it.”

IIFP Registrar, Abdul-Jelil Rabiu, said the workshop was meant to equip the management of the mosques, Islamic organisations, schools and asalatu groups on Islamic finance and bring Islamic finance to the grass roots.

Participants, he said, would have been exposed various benefits inherent in Islamic finance.

“The fact that Islamic finance has not been localised does not make the various groups at the grass roots to tap from its benefits. We hope that after this workshop, the mosques, Islamic organisations, schools and asalatu groups can improve on their economic activities and combat poverty with varieties of non-interest banking and financing products,” he said.

According to Rabiu, IIFP is licensed to design banking products, certify conventional banking professionals and ensure compliance with the ethics of the industry.

“We don’t see ourselves as substitute, rather as alternative to the conventional system. We are out to provide a healthy rivalry. We have come as an alternative to complement the efforts of the present government in terms of fighting economic crimes, increasing wealth and stabilising the economy,” he said.