Unapproved collection by charities to be banned in the Kingdom

Jeddah –

Charity

The Shoura Council is currently considering a new law that would ban the unapproved collection of donations from the public by charities and religious organizations, including tough new rules on getting permits and issuing financial statements.

The Shoura Council’s social affairs, family and youth committee wants the law approved by the country’s legislative advisory body. It wants the government to regulate the process of collecting donations particularly during certain times of the year.
The first article of the bylaw applies to all locally licensed charities and preaching bodies in the Kingdom.

The law would allow some registered bodies to accept donations from outside the Kingdom because many have links to UN programs.

Article 2 of the law stipulates that only authorized persons are allowed to seek and collect donations.

The committee has removed the phrase “to call for donations” arguing that charity organizations, imams and preachers should be urging people to donate anyway.

Article 4 stipulates that charities should only collect donations through their bank accounts endorsed by their senior management and in compliance with Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) regulations. They should also provide official, numbered receipts for the money received.

Charities should also use the money raised for stated activities, and submit detailed financial statements with supporting documentation outlining income and spending.

In addition, private printing firms are prohibited from printing any donation receipts for charities until they receive confirmation of their permits. Raising money for waqf projects and investments requires the written approval of the supervising body, the exact time frame of the project, and the names, goals and costs of the initiatives.

ARAB NEWS

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