The Ghana Association of Bankers (GAB) has donated 500 family food packs, valued at GH¢6,500, to the Zakat and Sadaqa Trust Fund of Ghana, to enable them to support needy Muslim households to beat the Covid-19 crisis.
Each pack contains gari, beans, salt, sugar, one litre of oil, five kilos of rice, six canned fish and five sachets of tomato paste, and would serve a household of four.
Mr Victor Yaw Asante, Chief Executive Officer of the FBNBank, who made the presentation on behalf of the GAB, said they found it very important to assist the Fund in their selfless work of providing for the poor.
He said GAB had since the COVID-19 outbreak, mobilised GH10 million to assist frontline institutions to complement the Government’s efforts to win the fight against the pandemic.
Beneficiaries so far include: the Ministry of Health, the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital and Doctors in Residence. Some pharmaceutical companies and some bodies have also been assisted.
In addition to contributing to the GH¢10 million fund, Mr Asante said, each bank had gone directly into various communities to provide support.
“So, in total, our banks have already done GH¢20 million direct contributions; and this is besides reducing the interest rates for companies in distress and engaging customers to restructure their loans to give them more time to repay them,” Mr Asante said.
“But we also deal in social activities, such as supporting faith-based organizations and the Zakat Fund falls within this,” he said.
He expressed the hope that the items would provide some level of relief to the needy families who had been affected in many ways by the COVID-19 crisis.
Hajia Azara Abukari-Haroun, the Administrator of Zakat and Sadaqa Trust Fund of Ghana, who received the donation, expressed appreciation to the Association for the timely support.
She explained that Zakat was one of the five pillars in Islam.
It is a form of alms-giving treated in Islam as a religious obligation or tax.
“With your kind gesture, you have just helped towards alleviating poverty in our communities and would thus fix smiles on the faces of many,” Hajia Abukari-Haroun said.
She said COVID-19 was a disaster, however, it had shown that human beings still loved one another and were working together in the fight against the disease.