In an August 8, 2019 letter, FIA directs Equity bank to “search your databases and avail us account opening documents, bank statements for the last three years and any other information available to you linked to each of the above-listed entities for further review,” reads the letter signed by Sydney Asubo, the FIA Executive Director.
National NGO Forum logo. Government wants NGOs' bank details for review
Intelligence Authority (FIA) has asked Equity bank for the account details of
13 non-governmental organizations to establish the source of their funding.
are Action Aid International Uganda, Citizens’
Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda, Alliance for Campaign Finance
Monitoring, Anti-Corruption Coalition Uganda, National Non-Governmental
Organisation Forum, Human Rights Network Uganda, National Democratic Institute,
Great Lakes Institute for Strategic Studies, Foundation for Human Rights
Initiative, Democratic Governance Facility, Kick Corruption Out of Uganda,
National Association of Professional Environmentalists, and the African
Institute for Energy Governance.
In an August 8, 2019 letter, FIA directs Equity bank to
“search your databases and avail us account opening documents, bank statements
for the last three years and any other information available to you linked to
each of the above-listed entities for further review,” reads the letter signed
by Sydney Asubo, the FIA Executive Director.
In a cheeky response on Twitter on Tuesday evening, Godber
Tumushabe, the associate director of Great Lakes Institute for Strategic
Studies, which is also listed, said: “The guys at FIA May be probably don’t
know what’s going on. They have to start with the contraband imported by Bank
of Uganda before they begin to look serious”.
The order for the NGO bank details comes at a time when the
government has called for the registration and verification of all NGOs in the
country. In a document issued
last week, Internal Affairs Minister, Jeje Odongo indicated that with effect
from July 31 2019, the National NGO register indicated that there were 14,207
Only 3,810 of them had had valid permits, while 10,397 had
expired permits. “The method of establishing those figures involved
physically going through every registered NGO file at the Bureau for
verification,” Odongo said.
But also government has become uncomfortable with sharp
criticism from several NGOs on issues of corruption, police brutality, and
general governance issues. The Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) Act
2016, which established the National Bureau for NGOs (NGO Bureau), was mainly
seen as an entity to clip their wings.
The FIA is mandated to see that dirty money that can finance
terrorists or be laundered doesn’t enter