Home » Inquiry into ‘financial concerns’ at school charity

Inquiry into ‘financial concerns’ at school charity

by UNN Feed

Abu Bakr Trust is based on Wednesbury Road, Walsall

A charity running schools in the West Midlands is being investigated by the Charity Commission.

It said the inquiry into Walsall-based Abu Bakr Trust was due to “serious and ongoing concerns” about its governance, debt levels, and financial management and reporting.

The regulator said it had previously spoken to the charity’s trustees in 2020 and 2022 about governance and financial management.

Abu Bakr Trust said new trustees took over in mid-2022 and it was working to bring its records up to date.

Legal duties

The trust runs four independent schools, a mosque and other educational settings, the commission said.

Its inquiry would examine a number of areas, including the charity failing to ensure annual returns were filed on time, and whether its legal duties and responsibilities under charity law had been properly exercised.

The scope of the investigation could be widened if further regulatory issues were discovered, the commission stated, and a report would be published once its inquiry was complete.

Abu Bakr Trust said new trustees took over in 2022, but the majority of the information needed to file the accounts lay with the previous trustees, whose health had been “severely affected” during and after Covid.

No loans had been taken out by the new trustees, who were trying to put measures in place to “ensure things are put back on track.”

The Charity Commission had been kept fully informed of the issues facing the new trustees, it stated, who “heavily rely” on the former trustees to work out accurate information.

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