Controversial NGO Act to be withdrawn following concerns

The controversial NGO Act is to be withdrawn following concerns raised over the proposed legislation.

Minister of National Coexistence Dialogue and Official Languages Mano Ganeshan said that the decision to withdraw the Act was communicated to local civil society at a meeting with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

“A committee proposed with civil society members and NGO secretariat officials would revisit the ‘necessities’ for new legislation and formulate means to address issues,” he said.

On February 20, 2018, the cabinet decided to publish the Draft Act to Amend the Voluntary Social Service Organizations (Registration and Supervision) Act no. 31 of 1980 (LDO 32/2011) to a gazette and present it to Parliament for approval.

Civil society activist Ruki Fernando had said in an article recently that the drafting had been done in secret with no consultations. (Colombo Gazette)