Now that they are affected, Transparency International Zambia (TIZ) officials have condemned the PF government, which they helped attain power and have been supporting.
TIZ, which has been silent on many issues that have negatively affected Zambians is one of the NGOs that PF has threatened to deregister.
TIZ director Goodwell Lungu, who has disappointed many Zambians now says
posterity will judge both the ministry of Community Development and the PF government harshly over the ‘unwarranted move to give notice of de-registration to NGOs that have not registered under the NGO Act’.
Lungu said in a statement that it is not only unfortunate but very sad that the Ministry has opted for a confrontational stance over the NGO Act when they are so many needs in the community that need urgent attention.
Mr Lungu said the issuance of such threats to stakeholders is shocking considering that NGOs have always been ready to dialogue.
He said TIZ reserves the right to disobey an unjust law as Zambia is a signatory to many international charters that protect the right of association.
Mr Lungu said TIZ is committed and ready to fight what he has described as an unjust law to the bitter end.
He said that as far as TIZ is concerned there is no single entity in Zambia that is registered as an NGO but either as a Society, Trust or Company limited by guarantee among others.
He wonders under these circumstances how the Ministry of Community Development can deregister TIZ which is registered as a company limited by guarantee and not as an NGO.
Lungu also wondered whether the Ministry of Community Development has powers to deregister an entity that they never registered in the first place.
He accused the Registrar at the Ministry of Community Development of overriding the powers of the Registrar of Companies and Registrar of Societies where most Civil Society Organisations are registered.
Mr Lungu said TIZ insists that the Ministry of Community Development Mother and Child Health and the PF Government concentrate their energies in reviewing this Act as promised in their Manifesto and their verbal statements during their first year in office as opposed to the current threats and intimidation.
He said TIZ and other stakeholders are ready for dialogue to resolve this impasse which we have continued to pursue and expect government to reciprocate in the same spirit.
Mr Lungu called upon government to withdraw forthwith the letters written to NGOs to debar them if they do not register in the next thirty days.