Amnesty International has asked Nigerians to rise against the proposed law to regulate activities of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), or there will be devastating effects.
The House of Representatives, on Monday, despite the opposition the bill has faced, announced that it would push through with a public hearing, having passed second reading.
The public hearing on the bill is slated for December 13th and 14th.
The sponsor of the bill and Deputy Leader of the House, Bala Jubril, in September, said there was no going back on the proposed legislation.
He had said: “Its passage will regulate registration, funding and use of foreign consultants by certain aid donors and organisations providing humanitarian services in the country.”
AI said, “The Nigerian government has just announced a public vote on a designed bill to take away the freedoms of Nigerian people. And if don’t act now and vote against it before the 14th of December, when the public hearing finishes, it could be too late.”
“The bill will have devastating effects on Nigerians which is why they are trying to pass it as quickly as possible before too many people take action to stop it.”
“The so-called ‘NGO’ bill will keep Nigerians from freely sharing their opinions, holding open discussion forums or organising people to protest.”
The bill, which has seven chapters and 58 clauses, states that “funds pledged by donors (to NGOs) must be disclosed before implementation of projects, including mode of disbursement and condition attached to the funding by the donor,” among other highlights.