The Minister of Internal Affairs, Gen. Jeje Odong has said that a number of Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) in Uganda are operating on forged documents.
“The forgeries were either committed intentionally by the NGOs, or by middle men hired by the NGOs to renew the permits and upon failure to meet the renewal requirements, resorted to forging,” he said on Wednesday at the government –owned Uganda Media Centre while addressing journalists.
As of July 31, 2019, the National NGO register indicated that there were 14,207 registered NGOs, out of which 3,810 had valid permits, while 10,397 had expired permits.
Government has now embarked on a follow up on the NGO Verification non-compliant districts and engaging the Ministry of Local Government. A database for CBOs was developed and the process of updating is on-going.
“In order to effectively implement the NGO regulatory framework, there was a need for a verification and validation of the information on NGOs. We’ve now embarked on an NGO verification and validation exercise which is still ongoing,” he said.
“Some NGOs that are ignorant of the NGO Verification law. A number of NGOs think that possession of a certificate of registration allows them to operate freely without any requirement to renew,” he said.
The minister, said NGO verification will help to determine meaningful relationships, correlations and variations in the data with the NGO Bureau and districts, to ascertain the status of NGOs operating in the Country. This exercise began on the 1st day of November, 2018.
He said on 8th April 2019, a communication was sent out to all districts requesting for a copy of the Community Based organizations (CBO) register and NGO inventory. Out of 128, 71 districts submitted their NGO Verification data and 57 did not comply.
The Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) Act 2016 established the National Bureau for NGOs (NGO Bureau) as a semi-autonomous entity under the Ministry of Internal Affairs to replace the National NGO Board.
The NGO Bureau is mandated to register, regulate, monitor, inspect, coordinate and oversee NGO operations in the country.
A National NGO Register was established in 1989 after establishment of the National NGO Board under the NGO Registration Act Cap 113 of 1989.