138 fundraising licenses issued so far in Bahrain
TDT | Manama
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
The Ministry of Justice, Islamic Affairs and Endowments have, so far, issued 138 licenses to raise funds for religious purposes in the Kingdom, said a top official.
“126 of the licenses were for collecting money from within the Kingdom, and the remaining were for sending or receiving money from abroad,” said Dr Mohammed Taher Al Qattan, Assistant Undersecretary for Islamic Affairs.
Explaining the roles and functions of the office of Registration of Applications for a License to Collect Money for Religious Purposes, he said the licencing system is for ensuring transparency, accountability and boosting donor confidence.
The system verifies the purpose for which the money is collected and reassures its correct use.
The ministry, Dr Al-Qattan said, had carried out an awareness campaign using the hashtag #Collecting Donations_Commitment and Responsibility’ for the purpose.
The office issues fundraising licenses to individuals for religious purposes.
“Issuance of all other licenses are by the Ministry of Labour and Social Development,” he added.
The ministry also addresses requests for fundraising licenses by associations and institutions, whether for charitable, social, educational, cultural or religious purposes.
The Ministry of Youth and Sports Affairs issues licenses to private bodies working in the youth and sports sector to collect money.
To receive a license, Dr Al-Qattan said, the applicant must be a Bahraini, a natural person (limited to individuals, excluding associations and institutions), should have good conduct and behaviour.
He should not have received any final judgments in felony or misdemeanour cases for violating honour, trust or public morals.
Regarding documents required, he said the applicants much attach original ID cared, statement of the bank account opened to collect money (showing: bank name, account name, IBAN account number, account balance).
“The applicant must fill up an application form, provide all details and contact numbers, and should specify the purpose of collecting the money, determine the period for collecting money, and plans for disbursing the funds.”
“Details of a beneficiary is required for transferring funds abroad as well as donors for receiving fund from abroad”.
“The applicant must send all the details in PDF format to the email: email@example.com.”
Al-Qattan also revealed that the office is in the final stages of launching licensing processes online through WWW.RFR.BH, where all the necessary steps for registration and application are available. “If the collection value exceeds 100 Bahraini dinars, it is necessary to obtain a license to collect money, and according to the law, the license period does not exceed one year.
It is permissible to extend for another three months upon request.”
On the types of licenses, he said there are four types.
The first is for raising funds from inside the Kingdom for up to a year.
The second is for receiving a donation, the third is for receiving money from abroad, and the fourth is for transferring money abroad.
Violations will attract life imprisonment or a jail term of not less than ten year and fines.
“Whoever collects funds for a terrorist purpose or public purposes without a license shall be punished with imprisonment and fines of up to five hundred thousand dinars,” he said.
To find the names of those licensed to collect money for religious purposes, visit www.rfr.bh, or call the office at 17812622, or message via WhatsApp on 17812622, or via email firstname.lastname@example.org.