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A-G set up committee to draft Non-Profit Organisation Bill

An 11-member committee has been set-up by the Attorney-General to draft the Non-Profit Organisation Bill that will provide new regulations governing Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)

The bill is expected to meet the United Nations (UN) 2020 deadline for the country to have its bill passed to ensure a strong governance system that will check transparency and accountability in the dealings of NGOs.

Members of the committee include representatives of NGOs, academia and government. 

Deputy Director of Department of Social Welfare, Mr Dela Ashiagbor, disclosed this in an interview with Ghanaian Times on Wednesday in Accra.

He said the significance of the bill was to prevent money laundering, following the emergence of terrorism in Africa to ensure that terrorists do not bring money into countries through NGOs.

He hinted that, currently, some NOGs operating in the country were under investigation by the security agencies after alleged money laundering and misappropriating of donors funds.

Mr Ashiagbor, although declined further details as regards to the names of those NGOs, was hopeful the bill would be done and passed by parliament before May 2020, to provide responsible regulation and prevention of abuses in the non-profit sector.

He explained that the non-existence of the bill had made it difficult to monitor activities of NGOs operating in the country as some NGOs squander monies meant for development.

“The Non-Profit Organisation Bill is expected to strengthen the sector’s capacity thereby establishing its credibility to government, private local and international donors and investors.

“It would promote an inclusive, practical and effective bill that guarantees the independence of the non-profit sector as well as stimulate the non-profit sector, facilitate regulation and institutionalisation,” he said.

Mr Ashiagbor said the committee would be embarking on a nationwide consultation across the 16 regions to engage with stakeholders as well as some NGOs for their input.

He said there were several non-profit organisation policies, drafts and various bills submitted to the Attorney General Office since 2007, which could be factored.

BY BERNARD BENGHAN                       

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