TAMING POVERTY IN NIGERIA: LANGUAGE, ZAKAT AND NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Hamzah Abdurraheem, Saheed Badmus Suraju

Abstract


Poverty, hunger and unemployment are social scourges ravaging many African countries, Nigeria inclusive. They constitute great obstacles to sustainable development and pose serious threats to security challenges. With her enormous human and material potentials, Nigeria ranks the 23rd poorest country in the world. To tackle the menace of poverty, hunger and unemployment, successive Nigerian governments have initiated series of poverty eradication or poverty-alleviation programmes. But these programmes, due to corruption and inefficient leadership, availed Nigerians nothing, as 61.5% of Nigerians, according to the  National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), are living below $1.25 per day. Against this backdrop, this paper focuses attention on poverty and identifies Zakat, the third pillar of Islam, as a panacea for its alleviation. The paper discovers that lexical repetition, lexical collocation, synonyms, presuppositions and implicature are diverse linguistic features that are woven into the textual fabric of the Glorious Quran to foreground the paramount importance of Zakat as a social security towards poverty reduction.  With a view to promoting national development and security, the paper concludes by advocating for an enabling law establishing a Central Zakat (and Sadaqah) Administrative Board that will be saddled with the responsibilities of collecting Zakat and distributing it to the beneficiaries as stated in Suratu-t-Tawbah,  verse 60 (9:60).


Keywords


Poverty, Development, Zakat, Zakatable Assets, Zakat Collection and Distribution Board

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21043/qijis.v1i1.3278

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Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.