The Role Of Waqaf In Community Development

When mentioning waqaf, the benefaction for religious or public purpose, the general perception is that one has to donate land to build surau (prayer hall) or to be used as burial ground. However, there is more than this to waqaf as it could also serve as a mechanism or instrument to restructure or develop a community. In Malaysia, the properties donated under waqaf is administered by trustees, namely the state religious and customary councils. They later develop the properties for the benefit of Muslims. Although today the waqaf concept has been expanded to include donating cash and shares apart from land, the concept remains limited. Therefore, there's a need for information campaigns, better understanding and transparent waqaf institutions that carry out their duties in the right manner.