RealNews

NGOs to Face New Curbs in Bangladesh

The Bangladesh government is likely to adopt a new law next week placing stringent curbs on nongovernmental organizations(NGOs), amid protests that it will cripple development projects worth US $500 million. If the Foreign Donation (Voluntary Activities) Regulation (Amendment) Bill 2004 is cleared by Parliament, where the ruling Bangladesh Nationalist Party enjoys a two-thirds majority, the government will be empowered to cancel the registration of any NGO involved in so-called “political activities.” The proposed legislation will place restrictions on the expenditure of NGO funds. For instance, an NGO will be barred from spending funds on a project that has not been approved by the NGO Bureau, which falls under the jurisdiction of the Prime Minister’s Office. If an organization fails to comply with these new restrictions, its executives and management board can be penalized. Full Story

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