Author: NIHT Media
The executive board members and staff of the National Independent Halaal Trust (NIHT) were placed under scrutiny at their Annual General Meeting hosted on Sunday the 5th of November 2017. The AGM allowed the board members and staff to exhibit the many successes and failures over the past year. All this, in the hope of building a better, stronger more efficient Halaal Certifying organisation.
The NIHT name no longer begs any introduction. Over the years it has built a reputation not only within the Muslim community, but also in all industries of the business community, as a leading Halaal certifying body.
Furthermore, the responsibility of certifying has always been looked at as a local concern because most of what we consume used to be manufactured locally. However, technology has fast tracked the way everything works and the food industry has not been left behind. As such we see now on the shores of South Africa, available to the Muslim community, an array of internationally produced goods which begs the question, “Are they Halaal”?
As such, the NIHT has taken on the task of travelling across the globe to certify many large companies who export their product to South Africa as well as ensuring that products produced in South Africa are meet the stringent NIHT Halaal Standards so that it can be exported to many Muslim countries.
The AGM was aimed at achieving two important goals. Firstly to give a report back on the organisation’s activities and secondly to discuss the relationship that needed to be shared by the three committees within the framework of the NIHT, i.e. the Management, Ulama committee and the scientific committee.
The meeting was opened with a Dua by Moulana Farhaad Mahomed (Durban). A brief welcome address by the chairman, Hafiz Moorad Booley set the proceedings in motion for the day.
Office reports from Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg followed which highlighted the many successes that were achieved. The reports were comprehensive and detailed the wide reach of the NIHT throughout South Africa.
Zohr Salaah and a delicious lunch were followed by the Scientific Committee report. While we are always familiar with the front of the certification and inspection processes, we seldom understand the need for ‘behind the scene’ science that goes into that process. Dr. Arshad Mather, chairman of the NIHT Scientific Advisory Committee, highlighted the need for utilising science within the assessment of products. What was also interesting was his appeal to the Ulama Committee to apply themselves to the many developments within the scientific realm so that answers can be derived for the benefit of the Ummah. The discussion of issues from GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms) and vaccinations to the developments that allow us in the 21st century to modify DNA and possibly alter the genetic makeup of organisms and embryos were mind boggling and certainly aroused a great sense of interest amongst the attendees.
The Ulama Committee report was presented by Moulana Usman Solehri who stressed on the need for religious guidance and research in the modern day Halaal industry. It’s easy to take for granted when dealing with simplistic products of pork and alcohol but with the intricate composition of shelf foods there needs to be constant research and development within the religious fraternity to remain abreast of these challenges. Moulana Solehri explained how, through thorough research by the NIHT Ulama Committee, issues are resolved and the organization is guided in terms of its policies. Another sterling example of how the NIHT is changing the face of Halaal in a global market.
Moulana Abdul Wahab Wookay then introduced Brother Muhammad Ali Omar to elaborate on matters of auditing, administration and efficiency. He represents a company called WWISE who is facilitating the process of having the NIHT ISO9001 accredited. Should this goal be achieved (InshA-Allah), this would mean that the NIHT in terms of standards would be on par with international safety and quality standards and would give the certified company further credibility in the sight of their consumers. This would make the NIHT one of a handful of Halaal organisation in the world to have acquired this level of accreditation.
The finance report was summarised by Nadeem Allie and set all attendees at ease and Alhamdulillah reflected a positive trend for the NIHT. This was followed with a Dua by Moulana Yusuf of Saabri Chisti which officially closed the day’s proceedings at 3:30pm.
All in all the AGM of 2017 was certainly informative and beneficial to all those present. An acknowledgement to all those who contributed to the success of the AGM. With all that was discussed and the passion with which the matters were dealt we can only but conclude that the NIHT it certainly a Mark You Can Trust.
First Published: 05/11/2017