KUALA LUMPUR: 7 April 2020 – SME Bank, an agency under the Ministry of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives has played its corporate responsibility role by distributing ‘zakat’ (tithe) amounting RM300,000 and made a corporate donation amounting RM50,000 to those who have sacrificed their time and lives on the frontline to ensure Malaysians are safe and well protected with their families.
YB Dato Sri Dr. Haji Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar, Minister of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives said, “The RM300,000 ‘zakat’ and RM50,000 corporate donation will certainly help support the Government's urgent need to provide infrastructure and medical facilities in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. The initiative taken by SME Bank is a response to the Government's call for all its agencies and non-government agencies to work together to help the Government fight the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Overall, the ‘zakat’ were distributed to the National Disaster Management Agency (NADMA) and Ministry of Health Malaysia, each receiving RM100,000 while Hospital Serdang and Hospital Universiti Sains Malaysia; Hospital Sg. Buloh and Hospital Kuala Lumpur through the Association of Islamic Banking and Financial Institutions Malaysia (AIBIM); and the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM) received RM25,000 each making the total ‘zakat’ contribution amounting RM300,000. The corporate donation of RM50,000 was given to #responsMalaysia, an initiative under the Malaysian Red Crescent Society.
Aria Putera Ismail, SME Bank’s Group President/Chief Executive Officer said, "SME Bank has chosen these organizations to channel its ‘zakat’ and corporate donation in view that they are at the forefront of combating the COVID-19. In brief, the funds will be used to purchase of specialized medical equipment for our frontline healthcare personnel to treat the COVID-19 patients and to provide financial aid to those whose income or salary are affected due to the Movement Control Order.”
Aria added, “In addition, the direct contributions to Hospital Sg. Buloh and Hospital Kuala Lumpur through AIBIM will be used to purchase the Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), other health equipment, sanitizers and hostel equipment for the frontliners.”
In 2019, SME Bank distributed ‘zakat’ amounting RM1.16 million to eight strategic partners, comprising of three public hospitals and five public institutions of higher learning as an effort to assist the eligible ‘asnaf’ receivers. The ‘zakat’ contribution to NADMA was presented by YB Dato Sri Dr. Haji Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar, Minister of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives to Encik Mohamed Zahari Bin Razali, the Deputy Director General (Post-Disaster) of NADMA during a presentation ceremony in Kuala Lumpur