It is nearly two weeks now since I came back from Jakarta. The knowledge about zakat management in Indonesia that I managed to accumulate are still fresh. Below are some of them that might be worth sharing.
1. The realisation of zakat in Indonesia has originated in about 1993 from the grassroots, not from the government, beginning from zakat consciousness created by journalist Erie Sudewo through Republika daily and subsequently through the establishment of Dompet Dhu`afa Republika, a form of Zakat Amil Board (Lembaga Amil Zakat, LAZ) initiated by the daily Republika.
2. Following later on the emergence of many LAZs around the state at all levels, from provincial to kecamatan and kabupaten, the government established National Zakat Amil Board (Badan Amil Zakat Nasional, BAZNAS), a national zakat organisation acknowledged by but operates quite independently from the government. Top officers of BAZNAS were appointed by the Indonesian President himself from among the outstanding figures of LAZs while some operational staff came from government agencies. However, the BAZNAS officers are not considered as government officers.
3. At provincial levels, there are Badan Amil Zakat Daerah (BAZDA), structured quite similar to BAZNAS at national level. BAZDA 's officers, however, are appointed by and accountable to their respective Governors, while LAZ's officers by their respective Foundations/organisations.
4. With the establishment of BAZNAS, zakat realisation in Indonesia is now being undertaken by two entities, firstly by the government-initiated BAZNAS and secondly by the voluntary LAZs. While BAZNAS could be considered as a top-down government-initiated endevaour, the LAZ is a bottom-up grassroot-initiated endeavour. Their activities are being coordinated by their umbrella organisation called Forum Zakat (FOZ).
5. In spite of the establishment of BAZNAS, LAZs are still needed in Indonesia as the country is too wide to be covered by BAZNAS alone. Historically, the management of Islam in Indonesia in general and zakat management in particular, especially during Dutch colonial period, was not undertaken by the state, but instead by pesanteren, Kiyais, Islamic organisations such as Muhammadiyyah and Nahdatul Ulamak, et. cetera. The phenomenon remains.
6. BAZNAS and LAZs officers work together as most of them have personal relationship and synergy. While LAZs are dealing with the public and masses, BAZNAS is recognised by the government for official information as well as dealing with Ministries and official government agencies. BAZNAS also plays a role in complimenting what the government is doing or not doing or is needed to do.
7. While BAZNAS concentrates its operation more on official public and private agencies, LAZs concentrate their activities more on the masses as well as amongst the members of their organisations. Both, however, cover not only local and national activities, but some also involve in regional and international relief activities.
8. The BAZNAS at national level, or BAZDA (Badan Amil Zakat Daerah) at provisional level, or LAZs at either national or local levels, operate independently of each other, without any specific structured organisations. Relationship between each other is more in the form of consultative, informative and coordinative. The only organisation that coordinates, avoiding duplications and settling conflicts is the Forum Zakat (FOZ), especially at the national level.
9. Both BAZNAS and LAZ's are accountable to muzakki (zakat payers), rather than to the government. The controlling of the policy and implementation, as well as the monitoring tasks are done by their respective Dewan Syariah.
10. The organisational structure of the BAZNAS, BAZDA and LAZ is almost quite similar. There are firstly Dewan Pertimbangan which deals with laws and jurisprudence; secondly the Komisi Pengawal consisting of Accountants, Financial Managers and Shari`ah experts; and thirdly, Badan Pelaksana that is responsible in the day to day operations, consisting of Ketua Umum, two Deputy Ketua Umum (Programmes and Networking) , General Secretariat, Treasury, and Divisions.
11. Unlike Malaysia where zakat institutions and management are positioned under Islamic Religious State Council (Majlis Agama Islam Negeri, MAIN) of respective sates in the country, zakat institutions and management in Indonesia is rather freer. An interested party could establish a zakat organisation by creating a Zakat Amil Board, after they have proven that they managed to accumulate a total of Rp 1 milyer annually. The approval body/Ministry usually come in two forms; firstly, by the Ministry that relates very much to the nature of their organisation (for instance youth, Islamic organisations, welfare organisations, human rights, et. cetera); and secondly, by the Islamic Religious Council. At provincial level, it may come from Governor's Office and the Islamic Religious Council of the province itself.
12. Most the LAZs and BAZNAS operate through the mobilisation of the masses as well as by popular participation. Volunteers at all levels, from public to university students and lecturers, work intimately with asnaf and in asnaf programmes, to train and empower them to overcome their problems.
13. At the moment, there are 18 LAZs at national level. They could be categorised into three categories as follows:
a. LAZ created by Societal Organisations (Organisasi Masyarakat, ORMAS)
1. LAZ NU
2. LAZ Muhammadiyah
3. LAZ DDI
4. LAZ Pusat Zakat Ummat
5. LAZ BMH (Baitul Mal Hidayatullah)
6. LAZ BMT (Baitul Mal watTamwil)
7.b. LAZ created by Entrepreneurs (Perusahaan)
LAZ BAMUIS BNI 46
8. LAZ Baitul Mal Muamalat (BMM)
9. LAZ Yayasan Baitul Mal BRI
10. LAZNAS BSM Ummat
11. LAZ BAZMA (Baituz Zakat Pertamina)
12. LAZ Amanah Takaful
13.c. LAZ created by Independent Foundations
LAZ Dompet Dhuafa
14. LAZ Rumah Zakat Indonesia
15. LAZ PKPU (Pos Keadilan Peduli Ummat)
16. LAZ YDSF (Yayasan Dana Sosial Al-Falah)
17. LAZ DPU DT (Dompet Peduli Ummat Darut Tauhid)
18. LAZ IPHI (Ikatan Persatuan Haji Indonesia)