Gov’t promises to mend relationship with NGOs

Internal Affairs Minister, Gen Jeje odongo

Internal Affairs Minister, Gen Jeje Odongo, has dismissed claims that government is at loggerheads with Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and that it is working on policies aimed to suppress them.

Launching a book titled ‘Uganda’s Civil Society’ in Kampala, Gen Odongo said that despite some issues having not moved on well between government and the NGOs, government is committed to addressing them so that the two parties can continue working together.

“I assure you that in the process of regulating this field through the NGO bureau, government doesn’t have any sinister motives but is focused on improving the sector,” he said.

As the line minister, Mr Odongo vowed to ensure that the relationship between government and these organisations is improved to the extent that where need be, the former will be ready to come in and support them.

The minister said the new book containing crucial information about these bodies will be of great importance to various stakeholders.

Stephen Okello, the head of the NGO Bureau, said that the author and financier of the publication did it at a time when the country lacks a one stop centre as far as operations of NGOs in the country are concerned.

“This book is important because it is going to spark off discussions on issues affecting CSOs.”

The National Unity Platform (NUP) spokesperson, Joel Senyonyi, urged government to stop referring to its critics as enemies of the state or agents of Europeans saying they do all this as a result of love for their nation.

Sarah Bireete, the Executive Director for Centre for Constitutional Governance (CCG) noted that government is more comfortable with NGOs sensitising people about sanitation than governance issues.

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