Red Cross unhappy with govt's NGO policy on reconstruction

December 7, 2016 01:38 AM Republica


KATHMANDU, Dec 7 : The International Federation of Red Cross in its World Disaster Report released on Tuesday has expressed its dissatisfaction over Nepal government's policy regarding the operation of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the reconstruction task in areas affected by earthquakes last year.

The international organization has expressed its dissatisfaction over the government's not allowing INGOs to work directly in the quake-hit districts. It has claimed that the policy requires INGOs to work with local partners.

"An example of strained partnership relations is provided by the 2015 Nepal earthquakes. International NGOs are not allowed to directly be operational in Nepal, and so must work through local partners," stated the report. It has said that in a six-month 'response review'-undertaken for the UK and Canadian funders the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) and the Humanitarian Coalition (HC), respectively-of the response of their member NGOs, it was found that the sense of inequality was keenly felt by many local NGOs. 

It has also stated that to contribute better to national and local NGO capacity, recovery plans must be jointly developed with NGO partners, wherein these partners have an equal stake in strategy, direction and final sign-off. 

An example of strained partnership relations is provided by the 2015 Nepal earthquakes. International NGOs are not allowed to directly be operational in Nepal, and so must work through local partners.
-- World Disaster Report of IFRC


In a move to enforce a one-door policy for reconstruction activities, the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) in February had asked all non-profit organizations to refrain from carrying out any reconstruction-related work without its permission. Shortly, the NRA also launched guidelines on regulating I/NGOs for the reconstruction and rehabilitation tasks.

"We have tightened rules for I/NGOs working directly in the quake-affected districts. They are only permitted to work in affected areas through local bodies," Ram Thapalia, spokesman at NRA, told Republica. "They are still breaching our guidelines and that has made it necessary to enforce the policy more strictly."

He also informed that the NRA has warned some of the INGOs for not working sincerely as per the guidelines. He further said that the NRA will be compelled to take legal action against I/NGOs if they are found involved in reconstruction-related works without NRA approval.

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