Human Rights Lawyer, Odinkalu Faults NGO Bill, Disagrees With NASS
A former Chairman, Governing Council of the National Human Rights Commission, Professor Chidi Odinkalu, disagrees with the National Assembly’s claim that the controversial Non-Governmental Organisation’s bill before it would help curb terrorism, money laundering among others.
BlackBox Nigeria gathered that the proposed NGO Bill when passed will monitor the activities of all registered NGOs, including their donations, funding and allocation of funds gathered for intended projects. The Bill proposes that all the activities of the NGOs will await the approvals of the Federal Government (Abuja) before they can carry out any planned work/activity.
Professor Odinkalu, while speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily, accused the Chairman, House Committee on Civil Societies Organisation and Development Partners, Honourable Peter Akpatason, of not caring for Nigerians, stressing that the lawmaker was after the American interest.
According to him, “He is concerned about terrorist organisations, right? All of us, we all are. In 2011, the Federal Government set up the Gaji Galtimari panel into the insecurity in the North-East.
“The Gaji Galtimari panel reported in September 2011. What they found out is that the people supporting Boko Haram were in government. They were in politics, they were identified.
“There was a white paper issued on the Gaji Galtimari committee report, nobody has been brought to book. Those people are still there in government. People will come up with red hearing on the civil society ‘terrorists’ ad you really want to believe it?
“That is not just nonsense but satisfiable nonsense,” he added.
Odinkalu’s comments come barely few hours after Hon. Akpatason stressed the importance of the bill, claiming if passed into law, would check issues of terrorism, money laundering among several others.
The lawmaker, representing Akoko-Edo federal constituency in the lower chamber, had while speaking on Sunrise Daily said, “If you look through the document to check the intendment of this document is to, in the first place provide something that looks like a clearing house for the activities of CSOs, registration and coordination with a view to promoting transparency, accountability, local content.
“And, to prevent the unlikely event of some powers or individuals, locally or internationally, using NGOs to promote terrorist activities, and money laundering,” he added.