As the National verification process of NGOs continues taking shape, the Financial Intelligence authority has revealed that it is probing financial transactions of over 10 NGOs involved in democracy related activities. The FIA boss has written to Equity Bank requesting that they avail them with transaction details of the various NGOs.
“The purpose of this communication, therefore, is to request you to search your databases and avail us account opening documents, bank statements for the last three years and any information available to you linked to each of the above-listed entities for our review,” Asubo said in his letter to the managing director of Equity Bank.
The various NGOs that have been fronted for financial review by the Financial Intelligence Authority include the Foundation for Human rights Initiative, Action Aid International, Alliance for Campaign Finance Monitoring, the Anti-Corruption Coalition Uganda, the National Non-Governmental Organisation Forum and the Human Rights Network Uganda, the National Democratic Institute, the Great Lakes Institute for Strategic Studies, Kick Corruption Out of Uganda, the National Association of Professional Environmentalists and Africa Institute for Energy Governance.
The Democratic Governance Facility (DGF), which is funded by seven of Uganda’s International Development Partners (Austria, Denmark, European Union, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden), is also under probe.
The move comes against the backdrop of countrywide validation of NGOs.
For many years government has expressed suspicion over the activities in which many of the NGOS are engaged in and the most recent back lash was from the President himself who accused NGOs of working with foreign entities and governments to push their agenda against the Ugandan government.
According to the Minister of Internal affairs Jeje Odong, the national NGO register indicates that there are 14, 207 registered NGOs, out of which 3, 810 have valid permits and others over10, 397 NGOs are operating illegally.
The NGOs that have been enlisted for probing are so much involved in advocating for democracy and human rights and have over time been suspected of receiving foreign funding to destabilize the political status quo of Uganda which makes it clear that the NRM government is in panic ahead of the 2021 general elections left right and centre trying to register and verify everything.
This is the first time since 1989 that Government is verifying NGOs across the country.