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International Talk Series Waqf Management in Ottoman Empire Era

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The International Talk Series recently presented the Director of ISEFAM Sakarya University, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sulëyman KAYA. The Talk Series was utilising webinars, the seminars through the web. Irham Amir, L.c, M.Sc. opened the seminar as the moderator and the translator. Talk Series continued with a speech by Dr. Syafi’i Antonio as the chairman of the Tazkia Foundation. Sir. Syafi’i explained the general condition of Waqf in Indonesia and shows his interest to know about Waqf in Ottoman Empire such as Cash Waqf. Following this, Mr. Irham invited Prof. Sulëyman to deliver the seminar.


Prof. Sulëyman explained the Waqf system in the Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman Waqf institution managed most of Ottoman lands at that time. Not only land, property and money (Dinars and Dirhams) are also used as objects of Waqf. Qardhul hasan and ba’I istighlal were the most used contract for Waqf in this empire. These had a profound effect on the state. The professor also discussed the legal endowments with goods containing elements of usury. The institution ensured that the goods used were halal in term of Islam perspective. Some Ottoman scholars said that endowments with items with usury are not permitted while others allowed if the element of unavoidably usury less than 15 per cent. After the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, Waqf management was dramatically felling down. Turkish welfare was threatened. Some of the existing Waqf land has turned into a church.

Even now there are many mosques built by individuals not by the institution. As such, the Turkish government now seeks to restore the function and role of Waqf institution in order to return the Glory of Ottoman Waqf Management.

The next session is question and answer guided by the moderator. The first questioner asked about the Waqf application system. Prof. Sulëyman said that no application nowadays is used yet. The Turkish Waqf system still utilises conventional method by sending administrators from branch offices to inhabitants collect Waqf assets and manage Waqf. The second questioner asked the contribution of Waqf to the country’s income, and the professor stated that Waqf in Ottoman empire did not contribute to state’s income, so that the profits obtained were directly managed by the Waqf institution.

The third questioner asked is Waqf in Turkey spread in Turkey only or abroad? Prof. Sulëyman answered that Waqf was also distributed to Sudan, Nigeria and Palestine in which more focused on daily needs funds. The question and answer session ended up after the Asr Athan, and the moderator closed the seminar.

Watch the live video of this event:

Rizqi ZakiyaInternational Talk Series Waqf Management in Ottoman Empire Era

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