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UGANDA: NGOs to declare funding sources

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A bundle of US dollars. It is important, according to government, to know where NGOs’ source their funds. PHOTO BY .

KAMPALA (DAILY MONITOR) – Non-governmental organisation (NGOs) have been challenged to be transparent by declaring their sources of funding.

Speaking at a Thought Leadership Forum organised by Standard Chartered Bank in Kampala yesterday, Mr Micheal Olupot, the deputy executive director of Financial Intelligence Authority, told more than 200 development partners and non-governmental organisations that whereas NGOs in Uganda are not vulnerable to money laundering, they are vulnerable to terrorism funding, something that needs to be guarded against.

Because the NGOs are vulnerable terrorism financing, he said, there is need to supervise their activities thus urging them to be transparent, especially with banks.

He said declaring their sources of their financing is for the well-being of their organisations, banks and the country at large.

According to experts in the banking industry, the global financing environment is rapidly changing, which calls for a critical review to protect the banking industry criminals.

“Banks are obliged to understand their customers, what sources they are getting their money from and what it is being used for,” Mr Olupot said.

However, Mr Stephen Okello, the NGOs Bureau executive director, said Uganda already has a law that gives government the power to register, regulate and monitor the activities of NGO to ensure that they are in operating within the law.

According to Okello, Uganda has more than 13,500 registered NGOs out of which 95 per cent source their funding from foreign donors.

Mr Albert R Saltson, the Standard Chartered managing director, said the global banking landscape was quickly changing driven by new technologies, which NGOs must align themselves with.

“Our commitment [is] to ensure that development and NGOs [as well as other customers] are safe and secure from financial crime, compliance breach as well as providing safe and cost effective financial solutions,” he said.

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