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The role of Islamic social finance in societal welfare: a case study of selected IFBOs in southwest Nigeria

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journal contribution
posted on 2021-09-17, 10:55 authored by Abdullah A Shuaib, M SohailM Sohail
This study aims to examine the role of Islamic social finance (ISF) instruments such as Zakah, Sadaqah and Waqf in the provision of social services by Islamic faith-based organizations (IFBOs) in Southwest Nigeria.

This study adopts exploratory approach based on field interviews conducted with leaders of IFBOs, whereas purposive sampling technique was used to select three case study organizations. Data collected from interviews and documents of case study organizations was analyzed using content and narrative analyses.

The first findings indicate faith in the Unseen God, scriptural texts and socio-economic factors as major motivation that accounted for the IFBOs’ concern for social services. The second finding shows that the ISF strategies used by the IFBOs to improve access to social services include Zakah, Awqaf, Sadaqah and gifts. The third finding reveals that the IFBOs have efficient stand-alone and windows operational structures that align with IFBOs corporate governance. The fourth finding also reveals the challenges facing the IFBOs such as inadequate funding, dearth of manpower, lukewarm and uncooperative attitude of Muslims and attitudinal behaviour of givers and takers.

Research limitations/implications
Absence of documented directory about the role IFBOs usage of ISF in providing social services in Southwest Nigeria affected the study. Many IFBOs were eliminated during the process of selection because of lack of records to indicate their social services relevant to the study. As such, information that could have been collected from the eliminated IFBOs could have contributed significantly to the study.

Practical implications
The major implications of the study are that ISF has been reinvented as an ethical social welfare framework for supporting the disadvantaged members of the society with ISF instruments and also highlighted the dichotomy existing between IFBOs in the North and Southwest Nigeria with respect to the legal and operational activities of IFBOs usage of ISF.

This study has contributed to a better understanding of the role of ISF instruments in the provision of social services in an area that is largely under-researched in Nigeria.



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International Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Finance and Management








Emerald Publishing Limited


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This paper was accepted for publication in the journal International Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Finance and Management and the definitive published version is available at This author accepted manuscript is deposited under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC) licence. This means that anyone may distribute, adapt, and build upon the work for non-commercial purposes, subject to full attribution. If you wish to use this manuscript for commercial purposes, please contact

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Prof M. Sohail. Deposit date: 15 September 2021