Africa Education watch to take legal action against GES over NGO/CSO Regulation Policy

BY UNIVERSNEWSROOM.COM - Jan 14, 2021 at 10:35am 100

Pix Inserted





Education Policy Research and Advocacy Organization, Africa Education Watch is threatening to embark on legal actions if the Ghana Education Service (GES) proceed to implement the Non-Governmental Organization or Civil Society Organization Regulation policy.

According to them, the draft Policy intends to undermine the rights of NGOs/CSOs to freedom of Association, their independence and constrict the Civic Space.

In an interaction with Univers News, Educationist and research fellow with Africa Education Watch, Divine Kpe says, CSO working in the educational sector will take the Ghana Education Service on if provisions of the policy compromise NGOs operations.

“We have a lot of backing, so we the CSO, will ensure that the right thing is done but if we realize that some provisions of this policy contradict our rights of association then we will have to take legal actions to fight that. We don’t want to get to that point that is why we are trying to arrive at a compromise with GES,” he said.

He further maintained that the Ghana Education Service is attempting to hold considerable authority over the operations of civil society organizations by proposing the NGO/CSO Regulation policy.

The NGOs/CSOs regulation Policy seeks among others to certify and regulate CSOs working in education.

“If GES sees that activities of CSOs within a year are not favourable to it, it can decide not to approve them. So, we believe that GES is trying to get too much authority for its selves to regulate CSOs or NGOs,” he added.

In a petition to GES dated January 12, 2021, Africa Education Watch also urged GES to freeze the draft NGOs/CSOs Regulatory Framework until that NGO Bill of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection have been passed into law to avoid foreseeable inconsistencies and duplications.

Background

The Non-Governmental Organization (NGOs) or Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) Regulation Policy is a framework introduced by the ministry of education and the Ghana Education Service in 2018. The policy intends to coordinate and harmonize the operations of NGOs and CSOs.

The framework promotes five main objectives which are: “to develop and maintain a national register and database of all NGOs in the sector; to ensure activities of NGOs/CSOs in education are addressing the sector objectives in their areas of operation in a harmonized and well-coordinated way; to develop guidelines for NGOs/CSOs in the sector including registering and reporting procedures and a code of conduct; to monitor and evaluate the standards of operations of NGOs and to ensuring transparency and accountability of NGO operations to government, GES and all relevant stakeholders.”