Zakaatul Fitr in a glance

حَدَّثَنَا مَحْمُودُ بْنُ خَالِدٍ الدِّمَشْقِيُّ، وَعَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ السَّمَرْقَنْدِيُّ، قَالاَ حَدَّثَنَا مَرْوَانُ، قَالَ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو يَزِيدَ الْخَوْلاَنِيُّ، – وَكَانَ شَيْخَ صِدْقٍ وَكَانَ ابْنُ وَهْبٍ يَرْوِي عَنْهُ – حَدَّثَنَا سَيَّارُ بْنُ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ، – قَالَ مَحْمُودٌ الصَّدَفِيُّ – عَنْ عِكْرِمَةَ، عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ، قَالَ فَرَضَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم زَكَاةَ الْفِطْرِ طُهْرَةً لِلصَّائِمِ مِنَ اللَّغْوِ وَالرَّفَثِ وَطُعْمَةً لِلْمَسَاكِينِ مَنْ أَدَّاهَا قَبْلَ الصَّلاَةِ فَهِيَ زَكَاةٌ مَقْبُولَةٌ وَمَنْ أَدَّاهَا بَعْدَ الصَّلاَةِ فَهِيَ صَدَقَةٌ مِنَ الصَّدَقَاتِ ‏.‏

Narrated Abdullah ibn Abbas:

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) prescribed the sadaqah (alms) relating to the breaking of the fast as a purification of the fasting from empty and obscene talk and as food for the poor. If anyone pays it before the prayer (of ‘Id), it will be accepted as zakat. If anyone pays it after the prayer, that will be a sadaqah like other sadaqahs (alms).

Hasan (Al-Albani)

Sunan Abi Dawud 1609

From the above hadith below benefits are inferred

It is not allowed to delay Zakaatul Fitr till after ‘Îd Ṣalaah and once Salah has been observed Zakaatul Fitr done afterwards is not acceptable. This opinion is most correct on this matter

The only people that are qualified to be give Zakaatul Fitr are the poor among the 8 categories of people that are entitled to Zakah generally. And this is the most correct opinion on this matter. Zakaatul Fitr is strictly for the poor and no more.

Hikmah and benefits of giving it out are spelt out in the hadith : to purify one fast from shortcomings and to serve as food for the poor.

Going by above benefits which targeted both the Giver and taker of Zakaatul Fitr. It is crystal clear that the guidance of the Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم as regard giving Zakaatul Fitr is food not money as some scholars erroneously opined.

It indicates the Rahmah of Allâh on Muslims to have given us this favour of using Zakaatul Fitr to rectify our shortcomings while fasting in order to have full reward intact. Alhamdulillahi for Islaam.

Side benefits
One Ṣaa’un which is equivalent to 4 Mududu is to paid per head. Coming back to our local measurement this is equivalent to 14 cups of milk tin or 4 derica (for Lagos people) approximately. And it should be paid by head of the house on those under him (wives, children, slaves and what a view) according to most correct opinion as some scholars said otherwise that individual should pay by his/herself if s/he has the the means or else the responsibility returned back to the head.
وصلى الله وسلم على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وصحبه أجمعين

Gathered by servant of Allâh who is in dare need of His forgiveness and Rahmah