Press release

Trustees of Ipswich Kurdish Islamic Cultural Centre breached their legal duties, regulator finds

The report sets out multiple failings by the trustees and concludes that the charity’s financial management was poor.

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The Charity Commission has today (23 March 2017) published a report of its statutory inquiry into the Ipswich Kurdish Islamic Cultural Centre (registered charity number 1149580) (‘the charity’), concluding that there was misconduct and mismanagement in the charity’s administration.

The report sets out multiple failings by the trustees and concludes that the charity’s financial management was poor.

The inquiry, which began in November 2015, found that the trustees:

  • made unauthorised salary payments to one trustee amounting to £1,360, even though the charity’s governing document prohibits the employment of trustees
  • provided a zero interest loan to 2 members of the local community totalling £20,000 which amounted to twice the size of the charity’s 2015 income
  • did not have a safeguarding policy in place despite the fact that the charity operates weekend classes for children

The report also criticises the trustees’ approach to engaging with the Commission, saying that their conduct fell below that which the regulator and the public expect, including by initially failing to take prompt action to address concerns identified by the Commission before it opened the inquiry. Following the opening of the inquiry, and as reflected in the report, the Commission acknowledges improvements in the trustees’ conduct.

As part of the inquiry, the Commission has made an order requiring the trustees to complete a number of actions to address the failings and regulatory concerns identified.

The report states that the regulator will take further regulatory action if the trustees fail to comply with the order within a stated timeframe.

Michelle Russell, Director of Investigations Monitoring and Enforcement at the Charity Commission said:

Our inquiry into the Ipswich Kurdish Islamic Cultural Centre found serious problems and basic failures. As our core guidance, The essential trustee, explains, trustees must comply with their charity’s governing document and the law and must manage their charity’s resources responsibly. That hasn’t always happened at this charity, putting it at risk of not being able to carry out its charitable purposes. I now hope the trustees take the necessary steps we have set out in our Order to improve the charity’s governance in the future.

The full report is available on GOV.UK.

Ends

PR 21/17


Notes to editors

  1. The Charity Commission is the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales. To find out more about our work, see our annual report.
  2. Search for charities on our online register.

Press office

Published 23 March 2017