[Press Release] BAZNAS Signs Poverty Sanitation Partnership with Bappenas

The National Amil Zakat Agency (BAZNAS) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) promising cooperation on the provision of sanitation and clean water with the National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas), the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) and the Indonesian Wakaf Board (BWI) at the Bappenas Office on Tuesday the 10th of January.

The parties agreed to cooperate in implementing the government's program in the utilization of zakat, infaq, alms and waqf (ziswaf) funds and other religious social funds for the development of drinking water and sanitation facilities for the community, using the approach of Total Community Based Sanitation (STBM).

Chairman of BAZNAS, Prof. Dr. Bambang Sudibyo said that this cooperative will assist BAZNAS in channelling the funds of zakat, infak, alms and other religious funds to where they can be used most efficiently.

"BAZNAS supports this sanitation and clean water supply program, and we will distribute the ziswaf according to asnaf, not only in Central BAZNAS but also to all Provincial BAZNAS and Lembaga Amil Zakat," he said, while giving a speech before the procession the signing of the MoU.

Prof. Bambang said this cooperation is a program that will easily attract muzaki to zakat through the official zakat institution. Because one of the problems is many muzaki who have not contributed zakat through official zakat amil, as per the guidance of the Quran and the rules in the Act.

"To collect and distribute zakat as well as possible, the process needs to be as credible, accountable, and targeted as possible. This will help to free the poor from various problems, one of which is the problem of clean water and sanitation," he said.

He said BAZNAS would fully support the program because, according to what has been announced by Bappenas, zakat, infak, and alms now form part of the program aimed at achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Zakat has also fallen under the scope of the Islamic financial architecture as designed by Bappenas. BAZNAS is preparing for the time when all official zakat management organizations become sharia financial institutions that are supervised and supervised by the Financial Services Authority (OJK).

Meanwhile, the Minister of National Development Planning, Bambang Brojonegoro, said that the cooperation was initiated by Bappenas as the coordinator of SDGs with MUI authorized to issue a Ziswaf Fatwa for clean water and sanitation.

One of the ambitious goals of this program is 'No Poverty', which focuses on poverty alleviation in Indonesia, and in turn requires access to basic services.

"In the provision of basic access, we cannot forget clean water and sanitation. Without it, we cannot create a healthy family, up to one third of children under five in Indonesia experience stunting (malnutrition), "said Minister Bambang.

He said one way to prevent it is to provide access to adequate sanitation and clean water. The government provides funds through APBN and APBD but the amount is limited, so it needs to be assisted by other sources such as zakat and waqf.

"We are grateful that MUI has issued a fatwa encouraging ziswaf to support clean water and sanitation program. We hope that BAZNAS and BWI can encourage the utilization of ziswaf for the welfare of the people, "he said.

The distribution of ziswaf in the program will accelerate poverty reduction in Indonesia and help people who do not have access to clean water.

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