The AAOIFI Governance and Ethics Board holds its 17th meeting and approves Waqf governance standard

The Accounting and Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI) held the 17th meeting of its Governance and Ethics Board (AGEB / the board) recently via video conference to specifically review and finalize the Waqf governance standard (GS 13).

Mr. Farrukh Raza, Chairman of AGEB, opened the meetings and expressed his appreciation to all the members and the secretariat, as well as, the relevant working group for their invaluable devotion and commitment towards the cause of AAOIFI, despite their eventful work agendas and engagements.

The Waqf governance standard provides the core principles of governance (corporate and Shari’ah) as applicable to Waqf. It includes specific considerations for the setup of the Waqf, key responsibilities and principles for establishing terms of reference of different organs of the Waqf, policies and procedures, guidance on internal control, guidance on transparency and disclosures, etc. Exposure draft of the said standard was issued in 2019 and the same has undergone multiple public hearings and multi-layer reviews, before being brought to AGEB for its final review.

The Chairman of the AGEB, Mr. Farrukh Raza, stated: “Waqf institutions are entrusted with a great deal of fiduciary responsibilities, protecting the rights of the beneficiaries, and curbing possibilities of corruption (financial or otherwise). He further added: “ I believe that this standard will impact positively the Waqf sector by contributing towards improving effectiveness and efficiency of the Waqf’s operations, optimize the yield on the Waqf’s assets and make them sustainable in the long run and this will surely instill stakeholders’ trust and confidence”.

On this occasion, Mr. Omar Mustafa Ansari, the Secretary General, AAOIFI stated: “I would like to thank both Future Investment and the International Institute of Islamic Waqf (IIIW) for their support and cooperation throughout the various stages of the project and we look forward to maintaining the collaboration and mutual efforts to the best interest of the industry”. He added: “ I would also like to thank the AGEB and working group members for their extensive efforts that resulted in issuing a substantial standard on Waqf governance and I am confident that this standard shall promote the development of the Waqf sector.”

The final standard on Waqf Governance will be issued shortly after the completion of due process by the secretariat.