Charity Commission inquiry into Al-Hijrah Trust delayed by separate legal case

13 Oct 2021 News

The Charity Commission’s statutory inquiry into the Al-Hijrah Trust (CIO) has been delayed while the regulator awaits the outcome of separate legal proceedings.

The Commission said that its inquiry, which was opened in March 2020, is now “substantively concluded”, but will not be closed until the land tribunal has considered a case related to property owned by the charity.

The investigation was opened over serious concerns that the charity’s property was at risk.

This inquiry is connected to an investigation into a related charity, the Al-Hijrah Trust, which was opened after that charity failed to file its financial accounts on time for five years in a row.

Improvements at charity

The Charity Commission said in a statement that its inquiry into the Al-Hijrah Trust (CIO) is “largely complete”.

It added that the trustee board had worked “positively and fully with the inquiry” leading to “improvements in the administration of the charity”. Responsibility for the charity has been handed back to the trustees from the interim manager appointed in March 2020.

The interim manager will stay on in her role to focus solely on the outstanding land issue.

The charity had an income of £230,000 and spent around £340,000 last year on education and poverty relief, according to Charity Commission records, 

Financial controls

The earlier inquiry looked at financial controls, as well as safeguarding and governance issues at the charity.

The Commission said in 2015 that it was concerned the charity’s trustees had “repeatedly failed to submit the charity’s accounts within the statutory timescales and address concerns” raised by the regulator.

The charity register at the time showed that the organisation had filed its 2015 accounts two days late, its 2014 accounts 171 days late, and its 2012 accounts 509 days late.

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