No fewer than 33 underprivileged persons received working tools worth N1.75million from a religious Foundation, Zakat and Sadaqat Foundation, under The Muslim Congress (TMC) in Akure, the Ondo State capital.
Among the beneficiaries of the empowerment programme, 26 of them received cash, while the remaining seven received working tools.
The tools distributed on Sunday include sewing machines, grinding machines, furniture tools, printers, and others.
In his address, the Head, Monitoring and Evaluation for Zakat and Sadaqat Foundation, Mr Misbaudeen Ismail, said the Foundation gave out the gifts with a view to helping the underprivileged and reducing poverty among the citizenry.
He disclosed that the Foundation was established in adherence to principles of Islam, part of which is Zakat.
Ismail emphasised that the purpose of Zakat was to eradicate poverty and assist the poor to take care of their families.
He, therefore, disclosed that the beneficiaries were selected across the 18 local government areas of the state, adding that the gesture would be extended to Ekiti, Edo and Delta states soon.
Ismail, however, called on devote Muslims to ensure they pay their Zakat regularly and cultivate the habit of helping the needy in society,
He said: “It is when we help the needy that our society can be better and safe to live in. Also, it will help to add more blessings to our income.
“As Allah says, when you give out, He will triple what you have given out. So, it is very important to pay Zakat and do Sadaqat.”
Appreciating the gesture, Chief Imam of Akure, Alhaji Abdul Hakeem Yayi-Akorede, charged public office holders to emulate the foundation for the betterment of the youth and the future of the country.
He said: “The money our politicians spent just for the primary elections, is it not more than what our lecturers demanded so that our children can go back to school?
“Instead of them using the money to promote our youths, the future of the country, rather, they used the money just to buy votes from the delegates.
“I want to appeal to our government to do something to make Nigerians happy like what the foundation is doing today.”
Also, Sheikh Moshood Momoduraji, Grand Mufasiru of Akure land, appealed to the beneficiaries to make good use of the gesture to alleviate their plights.
“It has become imperative for the beneficiaries to use whatever they get for the purpose of what they asked for so that in the nearest future, they too will be in a position to give out to other people,” he said.
Two of the beneficiaries, Mr Saheed Lawal, who received furniture tools and Mrs Mujidat Itanola, who received a sewing machine, appreciated the foundation for the gestures and promised to utilise them to better their lives.
The beneficiaries said that the lack of necessary tools had been hindering their job for years.
They urged the foundation to continue the good work, saying Allah would continue to bless them to do more.
“For Allah’s sake, let our people especially the well-to-do in society see it as a necessity to assist the needy to better their lives and those of their families,” they said.