A Muslim group has appealed for donations on behalf of an Islamic homeless charity to fund pilgrimages to the holy city of Mecca.
Brothers In Need describes itself as a non-profit group which is dedicated to ‘the idea of helping Muslim and non-Muslims’.
However a third-party group, Sydney Islamic Lectures, posted a message on Facebook encouraging people to make ‘100 per cent tax deductible’ donations to the charity so Muslims can visit the holy city of Mecca, in Saudi Arabia.
‘Help someone fulfill one of the pillars of Islam,’ it said on a March post which has since been deleted. ‘Fund their hajj trip.’
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Sydney Islamic Lectures posted this appeal calling for donations to a Muslim charity to fund trips to the holy city of Mecca
Brothers In Need describes itself as charity that helps Muslims and non-Muslims
The Sydney Islamic Lectures graphic included the Brothers In Need logo, the registered charity symbol and the phrase ‘100 per cent tax deductible’.
It deleted the post after Daily Mail Australia contacted Brothers In Need to ask if they had endorsed the Facebook post.
The charity declined to say if Sydney Islamic Lectures was affiliated with the charity or if it funded trips to Mecca from donations, even though the group’s Facebook site has numerous links and posts about Brothers In Need.
‘Thanks for that, we have contacted the admin on the page and asked them to remove it,’ Brothers In Need said via email.
The charity also declined to say if it had complied with Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC) guidelines, implemented in 2012.
‘Please send me a copy of the ACNC guidelines and regulations,’ it said.
A spokesman for Revenue and Financial Services Minister Kelly O’Dwyer said she would ask the ACNC and the Australian Taxation Office to investigate the charitable appeal.
‘It should be noted that the ACNC is an independent body and there are secrecy provisions affecting what it can disclose during investigations,’ he told Daily Mail Australia on Sunday.
Revenue and Financial Services Minister Kelly O’Dwyer has said she will request an investigation calling on people to donate to a Muslim charity to fund pilgrimages to Mecca
Brothers In Need says it is focused on helping the poor, need, sick, elderly and homeless
Brothers In Need describes it three key priorities as helping the poor and the needy, visiting the sick and the elderly and feeding the homeless.
The charity posted a Facebook video on Sunday showing director Dean Mousad helping the needy at Martin Place, in Sydney, on Saturday night.
‘Peace be upon you. This is Dean from Brothers In Need and Brother Aziz,’ he said.
‘We are out here on a Saturday night in Martin Place. As you can see we’re distributing aid to those who need it most.
‘We’re here on Monday, Tuesday and Saturday. The volunteers are distributing essential items. We’ve got hygiene packs, we’ve got the sanitary packs.’
The deleted Sydney Islamic Lectures Facebook appeal asked people to donate to the Brothers In Need Hajj Fund, which is based at a Commonwealth Bank branch at Westfield, Parramatta.
It’s a different account to Brothers In Need Limited, which has an account with the Commonwealth Bank at Bankstown, in Sydney’s southwest.
Brothers In Need volunteers hand out water, food and hygiene packs to the needy at Martin Place, in Sydney