APPOINTMENT TO HIGH OFFICES AND POSTS IS A TRUST:
There is also another sense of trust, and that is: everything should be placed at its proper and deserving place. An office or a post should be offered only to the deserving person; and responsibility should be given only to that person who is able to shoulder it and who has the capability to do justice to the trust placed in him.
Governorship, responsibilities of the party, nation or country, which are granted placing confidence in the persons concerned, are trusts, about which they are answerable. A number of proofs can be advanced in support of this statement.
Hazrat Abu Zar (RadiyAllahu Anhu) reports that he asked the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) whether he would not make him a governor somewhere. Hearing this the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) tapped his shoulder and said:
“O Abu Zar! you are weak, and this responsibility is a trust. On the Day of Judgment it will be a cause of loss of honour and ignominy. However, those people will be spared who will have accepted it with all its responsibilities and would have fulfilled whatever responsibilities they had in this connection.”[Muslim]
It is a fact that mere excellence of education or experience does not make a person most suitable for some office. It is also possible that a man may have good moral character and a righteous person, but he may not have the capabilities to fulfil the responsibilities of a certain office.
Hazrat Yusuf (Joseph) (Alaihis salam) was a Prophet. He was the living example of righteousness and virtuousness, but he had not offered his services to shoulder the responsibilities of the country on the basis of his righteousness and prophet-hood. He had taken the reins of office in his hand on account of his learning and memory.
“(Yusuf) Said.. ‘Entrust to me the treasures of the country. Verily, I am protector and learned.”
Trust demands that we should entrust such responsibilities and posts to such individuals as would be able to run them properly. If through bribery, nepotism and for some other reason we deviate from this principle and we select an unfit person for some office, then since we have ignored a fit person and have appointed an unfit and undeserving person, we have committed open misappropriation.
Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) has said that whoever has appointed an administrator through nepotism although there was among the people an individual who was more desirable before Allah than that person, then he has committed misappropriation against Allah, His Messenger and all the Muslims.”[Hakim]
Yazid bin Abi Sufyan reports that when Hazrat Abu Bakr (RadiyAllahu Anhu) sent him to Syria, he advised him thus: “O Yazid ! You have many relationships. It is likely that you may be influenced by them in making important appointments. I am very much afraid about you since the time the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) has said:
“Anyone who has been made responsible of some affair of Muslims and he has entrusted some responsible job to someone influenced by his relatives. Then Allah’s curse upon him. No virtue or justice from him will be accepted before Allah. So much so that he will be thrown in Hell”
The community from which the quality of keeping trust is vanished, can be recognised thus: the distribution of posts and offices in that community become a game and play of favours. The value of able men goes down and in their place unfit and undeserving men are appointed. The tradition has it that this forms part of those manifestations of corruption which will appear in the last period.
A man came to the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) and asked when the Doomsday would occur. The Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) answered: “When deposits in trust would start being lost, then wait for the Doomsday.” He was again asked: “What is the meaning of loss of trusts ?” He replied: “When responsibilities are entrusted to unfit persons, then wait for the Doomsday.”[Bukhari]
PERFORMANCE OF DUTY IS ALSO A TRUST
This sense is also included in the meaning of trust that the man to whom the responsibility has been entrusted should have the sincere inclination of satisfactorily fulfilling those responsibilities and that he should devote all his energies for doing justice to fulfil it. Undoubtedly it is a trust. Islam considers it worthy of honour that a man should be sincere in his work, should be keen on doing his job in a better way, and should be alive to safeguard the right of the people that are in his charge, for however ordinary that responsibility may be, a slight negligence is likely to cause undue harm to the whole community and society; and the germs of corruption and mischief enter the entire body politic. Dishonesty in performing official duties causes various moral disease in the society. It causes great harm to the religion, to the Muslim public and to the country. This sin, its punishment and its evil appear in different forms.
The Messenger of Allah (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) has said:
“On the Day of Judgment when Allah will gather all the people, past and present, a flag will be fixed for everydeceiver, by which he will be recognised. So it will be said that this is the group of such and such deceivers.”[Bukhari]
In another tradition it is stated:
“There will be a flag near the head of every deceiver which he will raise in proportion to his deceit. Listen, there is none worse deceiver than the Amir who deceives the public.”[Muslim]
In other words there will be none more deceitful and deserving of bad consequences than the person who is made responsible for the affairs of men and he sleeps peacefully while the public is undergoing hardships and facing destruction.
MISUSE OF OFFICE IS BETRAYAL OF TRUST
Trust demands that if a man is appointed to a certain high office he should not use it for self-aggrandisement or for the benefit of his relatives, for the use of public funds for personal purposes is a crime.
It is a common thing that the governments and the firms give fixed salaries to their employees. Then to find out extra sources of income is disrespectful, ignominious and mean. Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) has said:
“Whomsoever we will entrust with service, the provision of his needs is also our responsibility, If he takes more than this then he is committing misappropriation,”[Abu Daud]
It is misappropriation because he has used that property of the organisation for himself, which was to be given to the weak and the needy, and it was to be spent for a greater cause and purpose:
“If any person is so false, he shall on the Day of Judgment, restore what he misappropriated; then shall every soul receive its due, whatever it earned, and none shall be dealt with unjustly.”
(Ale Imran ..161)
But a man who takes care of the commands of Allah in fulfilling his responsibility and he is averse to indulge in dishonest practices in performing his duties, then he is considered by Allah one among the fighters for the supremacy of the religion The Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) has said :
“When the Administrator is given a job, he should receive his due and should pay the dues of others, then he is like a fighter in the cause of Allah till he returns home.”[Tibrani]
Islam has forbidden the exploitation of one’s office and taking undue advantage from it. It has been very severe in closing all the avenues of earning illegal wealth.
Adi bin Umaira (RadiyAllahu Anhu) narrates that he has heard the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) as saying:
“Whomsoever we have given some post and he has concealed a needle or a thing smaller than that, then it will be a misappropriated thing with which he will have to appear on the Day of Judgement.”
Thereupon a dark-skinned Ansari got up and said: “O Messenger of Allah ! take away my governorship.”
The Prophet inquired what was the matter. He replied: “I have heard all your talk just now.”
The Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) said:
“I still say that whomsoever we may make a governor, he should place everything before us. He should take whatever is given to him, and should keep away from whatever he is asked to desist.”[Muslim]
It is said that a man from the tribe of Uzd, called Ibn Labith, was sent as an administrator by the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) to collect charity and donations. When he returned with the collection he said: “These are your things and these have been lifted to me.” The narrator of the hadith says that hearing this the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) stood up and after the praise of Allah said:
“I appoint, from amongst you, an administrator for these affairs for which Allah has made me responsible. When that man comes back, he says this is for us and this has been gifted to him. If he tells the truth, then why does he not sit in his parents’ house, Let us then see from where the gifts come to him? By God, if anyone of you receives even an ordinary thing without it being due, he will have to appear before Allah carrying that thing. I do not want to see anyone of you meeting Allah in this condition that he is carrying a camel on his head or a cow which is bellowing or a goat that is bleating .”
Then he raised his two hands till the whiteness of the armpits was visible and said:
“O Allah! I have conveyed your message.”