June 20, 2024

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Ethiopia Cracks Down on Civil Society Organizations

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Yesterday, the Ethiopian officials announced that they are going to cancel the registration of those civil society organizations which have not reregistered themselves under the new decree. In addition, they announced to cancel the registration of 293 organizations that did not send in their reports.

Last month government announced that according to decree 1113/2011, organizations registered under the previous decree 621/2001, must be registered again within one year. 1558 civil society organizations failed to re-register themselves and 293 organizations have not confirmed their existence.

Yesterday, Deputy Director General Fasikaw Mola explained that 1,554 civil society organizations that were registered in the past but did not reregister under the new law will be shut down. He said that the government tried hard to get civil society organizations to register so they could keep working. The government broadcasted messages on TV about it and talked to the relevant groups as well about it.

Fasikaw Mola explained that starting from July 1, 2016, (E.C.) government will take action against these organizations.

The Deputy Director General mentioned that the authority keeps an eye on civil society groups in three ways. They check on the groups by asking them to send in a report about what they do each year, visiting them in person, and listening to feedback from the public. The authority found that 293 organizations did not send in their reports as they were supposed to. These organizations were told to send in their reports within a year. The deadline was April 20, 2016, (E.C.) but since the reports still have not come in, the board decided on April 30 to cancel the legal status of these 293 organizations.

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