LegCo must talk zakat, price hike
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE proper distribution of zakat and the current price hike the country is experiencing are some of the issues that have been voiced out by the public to be addressed at the Legislative Council (LegCo) meeting this week.
"We would like the recent dispute of zakat distribution to be brought up in the meeting and we hope to see a solution from there," said a couple from Temburong who would like to remain anonymous.
The couple commented that there are many poor people in the country who deserve their share of zakat, more than some of those who have applied for it. They highlighted that relevant authorities should have the initiative to look for these poor people and not only rely on the application forms filled out by the public.
"Anyone can claim that they're poor but we have real poor families who sometimes do not even have the capability to go to the office to apply accordingly for many reasons, for instance, the absence of transportation and money (needed for public transportation)," they added.
The couple also said that the current price hike has slightly affected some families. They recalled that the price on daily needs were much more comfortable five years ago compared to today.
"We have seen quite a noticeable upward movement of prices on the daily needs of our lives in the past five years," the couple said.
A local who works as a nurse, Hj Shahrin Hj Abd Gaffar commented that the price hike could affect the people of the country in a short and long-term period depending on their incomes.
"Even though my wife and I are earning comfortable combined monthly incomes, we are also currently affected by the current price hike and this could cause a big inconvenience to us in the long run," he said, adding that those who are earning low incomes will suffer more in a short period of time.
"We really wish for this matter to be mentioned in the meeting though we are very grateful that the recent global financial crisis never really affected us," he added.
Hj Shahrin's wife also hopes that the recent zakat dispute will be addressed and clarified in the meeting in order to find a proper solution to the problem.
She suggested that village heads in the country could contribute to this by helping relevant authorities to sort the matter out.
Village heads have a proper record of the poor people in their respective villages so they can either help to obtain and fill up the forms or submit a proposal to the relevant authorities to probe into, she said.
A local high school teacher who wished to remain in anonymity asked for this matter to be explained in the meeting in order to make the public understand about zakat entitlement more clearly.
"I don't have much to say on this but hopefully the actual rights to the zakat will be explained in the meeting so that people will fully understand if they are entitled to claim their share or not," said the teacher.
The Brunei Times