Members asked the Imam and Administration for Audited Accounts and to hold an Annual General Meeting (AGM) to account to the Jamaat.
What is the ruling on presenting the audited accounts to the Jamaat for funds which members contributed? Isn’t accounting from the Sunnah?
Is it wrong to have an AGM – or anything of a similar nature – to account for performance of the administration and for expenditure?
Note: A quick google search shows that AGM’s are held in many masjids all over the world and audited accounts are published on their websites in order to be transparent. If it was not from the Sunnah, why are Masjids having them?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
May Allah Ta’ala reward you for making an effort to seek what is correct in the guidance of Shari’ah.
The first concern you mentioned is pertaining to the Jamaat’s funds. Those in charge of funds/donations (the Mutawallis) must keep a proper record of all the income and expenditure of the Masjid. Each Mutawalli should bear in mind that such a privilege is coupled with responsibility. To be entrusted with the affairs of any institute is a trust. The levels of this trust rise when it is a Deen-based organization and more so when you are at the helm of the affairs of the House of Allah.
Therefore, any necessary procedures required to ensure such funds are properly managed must be adopted. With the agreement of the masjid’s Shura, accounts and management of the masjid’s funds should be presented as reasonably needed. At the same time, one should avoid entertaining suspicions about the mismanagement of funds etc. as harbouring such doubts is against the Sunnah of our Beloved Nabi ﷺ.
As far as the second aspect of your query, regarding an AGM or similar, Muslim organisations should be run by competent individuals who are Allah-fearing and possess Islamic knowledge. It is imperative for Mutawallis and those on the Masjid’s committee to be fully committed to Islam and to continually work on their own spirituality to be able to maximize on the rewards of serving the House of Allah. Mutawallis will only be able to fulfill their role adequately if they themselves are practicing Muslims and true flag bearers of the Deen.
Shari’ah advises that a Shura committee should be formed comprising of such competent individuals as explained above, who’s interest is solely for Allah and the benefit of the Masjid. This Shura should be led by an Ameer , and they should as needed, present accounts/expenditures to relevant members/sponsors of the masjid. Such a Shura is in accordance with the Sunnah of The Prophet ﷺ and will fulfil the obligations of the Masjid.
The most important thing in dealing with the blessed house of Allah is Ikhlaas and the purity of heart. Without Ihklaas and purity of heart, these things become empty hollow structures without any meaning and will lead eventually to more disputes, misunderstanding and trouble.
And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best
Mufti Arshad Ali