The interior ministry has formally allowed 25 international non-governmental organisations (INGOs) to work in Pakistan. The decision was taken on Tuesday during a high-level meeting held at the ministry.
The meeting – chaired by Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan – was attended by the interior secretary, special secretary interior, National Counter-Terrorism Authority (Nacta) national coordinator (NC), IG Islamabad, National Database Registration Authority (Nadra) chairman, Islamabad chief commissioner, Safe City Project’s director and senior officials of the ministry.
The INGOs, which have been cleared by the interior ministry, include Kokyo Naki Kodomotachi, Medicins Sans Frontieres, Operational Centre Brussels, Royal Commonwealth Society for the Blind, Medicins Sans Frontieres, Qatar Charity, Jhpiego Corporation, Oxfam Great Britain, HelpAge International, Medicins Sans Frontieres, Care International, Secours Islamique France, Association for Aid and Relief, Japan Emergency NGOs.
The list also includes International Medical Corps, Saudi Relief Committee for Afghanistan, Relief International, World Learning Inc, Sakura Wheelchair Project, Action Against Hunger, Midland Doctors Association, Terre des homes Foundation, The Fred Hollows Foundation, Health Care 4 All International, Custodian of Two Holy Mosques Relief Campaign for Pakistan and American Refugee Committee International.
Addressing members of INGOs Committee of the Interior Ministry, Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan directed them to further expedite the process of registration in consultation with all stakeholders.
“The new policy is aimed at facilitating the INGOs and to regulate their affairs thus making the entire system more transparent and work-friendly on one hand and to build a strong partnership of governmental and non-governmental sector in all areas of development, on the other,” he said.
Quoting a letter from Pakistan Humanitarian Forum wherein the INGOs representative body appreciated Nisar and the ministry for their support to the INGOs and the commitment to make the new system a success story, the minister observed that it was encouraging to see the response of the non-governmental bodies towards the efforts aimed at regulating the system.
“The Interior Ministry is ready to assist the provinces in putting in place similar mechanism for the registration of NGOs in the provinces and thus regulating their affairs,” he said.
The interior minister also directed the IG police to immediately shift the INGOs offices from the residential areas in the light of directions of the Supreme Court.
“We respect observations of Superior Judiciary and Supreme Court’s decision will be implemented in letter and spirit. However, it is not befitting the stature of judges to raise the profile of international organisations by naming them in their statements out of context,” he added.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 16th, 2016.