PTPTN: Our zakat giving won't affect study loans

File picture shows an employee serving a customer at the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) in Kuala Lumpur July 16, 2018. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
File picture shows an employee serving a customer at the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) in Kuala Lumpur July 16, 2018. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

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KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 29 ― The National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) has said its giving out of zakat or obligatory alms in Islam is the fulfilling of its religious obligations, with the fund assuring that it would not affect the giving out of loans to university students.

PTPTN said the fund gives out zakat based on its profits, clarifying that it will not dip into funds for study loans to give out the alms.

“This payment of zakat actually does not affect the loans that will be given to students, as the payment of zakat is based on the net revenue of investments especially SSPN deposits and not from the fund for the giving out of loans.

“PTPTN calls for the payment of zakat that is obligatory on PTPTN to not become an issue or be a polemic as it is a religious obligation,” the fund said in a statement late last night.

“PTPTN will continue to be committed in ensuring there are enough funds to provide loans for the generations to come and at the same time PTPTN's funds are blessed in line with religious obligations,” it added.

In the two-page statement, PTPTN said it had started the practice of issuing zakat payments to all states in Malaysia since the year ending 2016, and had continued to do so for the year ending 2017.

PTPTN said ceremonies for the handing over of the zakat payments were held in Melaka, Penang, Johor, Pahang, Negri Sembilan, Sarawak and Kedah, adding that similar ceremonies will be held in other states that receive zakat payments if held by the respective states' Islamic religious authorities.

“The zakat payment made by PTPTN is obligatory for PTPTN's investment proceeds and these zakat payments are done so that the income received would be cleansed and blessed by Allah SWT. PTPTN also hopes that this payment of zakat which is a religious obligation will not be a polemic,” it added.

in the statement, PTPTN explained that business zakat is a responsibility that businesses that deal either in goods or services had to fulfill, if the business fulfills the requirements.

“Therefore, PTPTN is obliged to issue business zakat on the proceeds of investment that are made for all investments including for deposits received through the National Education Savings Scheme (SSPN) with full responsibility,” it said, noting that the SSPN is a Shariah-compliant savings scheme where savings from depositors are used for investments.

“The basis used by PTPTN is that PTPTN fulfills all conditions set which obliges PTPTN to issue zakat as outlined by the zakat centre. As has been stipulated, PTPTN's zakat payment is 2.5 per cent of the annual net investment profits.

“The investment revenue obtained is additional income and the percentage of obligatory zakat is minimum, that is 2.5 per cent from the net investment profits,” it said.

The statement came a day after PTPTN chairman Wan Saiful Wan Jan handed RM1 million in alms to the Kedah Zakat Board to help in development efforts for the destitute and reduce poverty in the state.

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