Opening its 2016 resumed session, the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations today recommended 61 groups for special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council, deferring action on the applications of 47 others.
The 19-member Committee vets applications submitted by non-governmental organizations (NGOs), recommending general, special or roster status on the basis of the applicant’s mandate, governance and financial regime. Organizations with roster status can only attend meetings of the Council. Those enjoying special status can attend meetings and issue statements, while those with general status can speak during meetings and propose agenda items.
Several NGOs saw action on their applications postponed because Committee members requested further information including, among other items, details of their respective activities, expenditures, funding sources and intended contributions to the Council’s work.
At the outset of the meeting, the Committee recalled that Member States had elected Elif Çaliskan (Turkey), Farid Jabrayilov (Azerbaijan) and Forouzandeh Vadiati (Iran) as Vice-Chairs during its regular session in January. It also decided that Mr. Jabrayilov would continue to serve as Rapporteur.
Delivering opening remarks, Committee Chair Jorge Dotta (Uruguay) emphasized that members had much to accomplish within a limited time, expressing hope that they would work in a collaborative and effective manner for a successful outcome. As the international community looked forward to implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, civil society would play an important role in reach the ambitious goals, he said. In fact, only through sustained efforts and collaboration among all actors could the world ensure that no one was left behind, he added.
He said that, during the present session, the Committee would consider 219 new applications, in addition to 245 deferred from previous sessions, 336 quadrennial reports of NGOs with general and special consultative status, and 90 quadrennial reports deferred from earlier sessions. Since the Committee had only eight working days in which to review them all, it must manage its time effectively and work in a deliberate and expeditious manner, he stressed.
Alberto Padova, Acting Chief of the Non-Governmental Organizations Branch of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, also called attention to the heavy workload, pointing out that the Committee had received 20 per cent more applications compared to 2015. As the volume of work continued to grow, the Paperless Committee Platform had been enhanced to provide greater security.
The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations will reconvene at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, 24 May, to continue its session, which runs from 23 May to 1 June.
Special Consultative Status
The Committee recommended that the Economic and Social Council grant special consultative status to the following 61 organizations:
“Böyük ipək yolu" beynəlxalq gənclər ittifaqı (Azerbaijan);
Africa Child Policy Forum (Ethiopia);
Association Elmostakbell pour le Développement (Mauritania);
Association des Jeunes Engagés pour l’Action Humanitaire (A.J.E.A.H.) (Togo);
Association of Iranian Jurists Defending Human Rights (Iran);
Associação Alfabetização Solidária (Brazil);
Bangladesh Friendship Education Society (Pakistan);
Center for Family Studies (Morocco);
Centre for advanced study on courts and tribunals (India);
China Ecological Civilization Research and Promotion Association (China);
China Women’s Development Foundation (China);
Comité/Club UNESCO universitaire pour la lutte contre la drogue et les autres pandémies (CLUCOD) (Côte d'Ivoire);
East Eagle Foundation (Democratic Republic of the Congo);
Franklyn Town Community Development Project Limited (Jamaica);
Fundación Avina (Panama);
Fundación Grupo Sólido para la Promoción de los Valores (Argentina);
Fundación More Peace Less AIDS (Argentina);
Global Health Foundation (Sudan);
Health and Environment Program (HEP) (Cameroon);
Ideosync Media Combine (India);
Iranian Foundation of Aerospace Science and Technology (N.G.O.) (Iran);
MOHAN Foundation (India);
Mosquitia Asla Takanka-MASTA (Unidad de la Mosquitia) (Honduras);
National Council of Social Welfare (India);
Nesakkarangal Charitable Trust (India);
Oyoun Center Foundation for Studying and Developing Human Rights and Democracy in Assuit (Egypt);
Partnership Opportunities for Women Empowerment Realization LTD/GTE (Nigeria);
Portafolio Verde S.A.S (Colombia);
Promotion des Yaelima de Dekese (Democratic Republic of the Congo);
Rare Diseases Foundation of Iran (Iran);
Rural Mother & Child Health Care Society (Bangladesh);
Sahyog Bal Shravan Viklang Kalyan Samiti (India);
Shoq Te Ndryshem & Te Barabarte (Albania);
Tavanyab Association of Children and Adolescents Support (Iran);
The Association of Citizens Civil Rights Protection “Manshour-e Parseh” (Iran);
The South African Institute of International Affairs (South Africa);
Unión Latinoamericana de Ciegos (Uruguay);
Victims of Crisis Aid Society (Nigeria);
Yayasan Rumah Zakat Indonesia (Indonesia);
Access Israel (Israel);
Alliance Globale contre les Mutilations Génitales Féminines (France);
Asia Pacific Alliance for Disaster Management (Japan);
Association Internationale pour l’égalité des femmes (France);
Yayasan Wadah Titian Harapan (Indonesia);
International Accountability Project (United States);
Global Distribution Advocates, Inc (United States);
Association Norlha (Switzerland);
Association on American Indian Affairs, Inc. (United States);
Associazione Bambini Senza Sbarre — ONLUS (Italy);
Beautiful Mind (Republic of Korea);
Bridge To Turkiye (United States);
Business Innovation Research Dev (France);
CCS Disability Action Incorporated (New Zealand);
CSR-Dialogforum - Verein zur Förderung nachhaltigen Wirtschaftens (Austria);
Canterbury Refugee Council Inc. (New Zealand);
Care-To-Help Foundation a NJ Nonprofit C (United States);
Centro UNESCO De Donostia-San Sebastián (Spain);
Centrul de Resurse Juridice (Romania);
Children of China Pediatrics Foundation (PSC) (United States);
Community Centred Conservation (C3) (United Kingdom);
The Committee postponed consideration of the following 46 organizations:
“ECO-FAWN” (Environment Conservation Organisation — Foundation for Afforestation Wild animals and Nature) (India) — as the representative of India sought information about its online presence and updated financial activities.
Adaamasunle Foundation (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa requested further information about its recent projects and activities.
Akhil Bharatiya Human Rights Organisation (India) — as the representative of Pakistan asked for detailed information about income expenditure.
Asociación Civil Hecho por Nosotros (Argentina) — as the representative of South Africa sought clarification about its total expenditure, saying it seemed very low.
Association Mondiale pour l’Echange Culturel, Artistique et Artisanal (Togo) — as the representative of South Africa requested further information about the organization’s recent projects and activities, as well as their outcomes.
Caribbean Policy Development Centre Inc. (Barbados) — as the representative of South Africa noted that the application was not complete. She sought clarification of the centre’s intention to contribute to the work of the Economic and Social Council and details of its planned activities and projects.
Centre for Convention on Democratic Integrity Ltd/Gte (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa asked for disaggregation of funds.
Centre for Peace, Culture and Environmental Studies (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa requested further information about its peace and conflict-resolution projects.
Change Managers International Network Limited by Guarantee (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa asked about its website. She also asked about the location of its operations in Nigeria.
Chibuzor Human Resource Development Organization (Sierra Leone) — as the representative of Nicaragua sought clarification of its recent projects and activities.
Connections for Afghanistan Research and Prosperity Organization (Afghanistan) — as the representative of Sudan asked about the expected outcomes of current programmes.
Creators Union of Arab (Egypt) — as the representative of South Africa sought further clarification about its intention to contribute to the work of the Economic and Social Council.
Danjuma Atta Eye Foundation (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa requested that the organization submit its latest financial statement.
Dayemi Foundation (Bangladesh) — as the representative of South Africa noted that it promoted and assisted in establishing orphanages, schools, colleges, universities, research institutes, mosques, madrasas, technical training centres, hospitals and clinics. She asked about recent examples.
Disability Organisations Joint Front (Sri Lanka) — as the representative of South Africa asked for an explanation for its budgetary deficit. The representative of the United States emphasized that the Committee had no obligation to pose questions about financial activities.
ALBERTO PADOVA, Acting Chief, Non-Governmental Organizations Branch, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, stressed that any financial contribution should be openly declared to the Committee, adding that members were free to ask and comment about financial activities.
The representative of Greece noted that the Committee had granted special consultative status to some non-governmental organizations running budgetary deficits.
The representative of South Africa said the Secretariat should guide the Committee on that issue, asking why the matter was mentioned on the application if it was not essential to the Committee.
Mr. PADOVA, while stressing the importance of financial independence, noted that some organizations operated with limited budgets based on volunteerism.
Establishment of Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah Al Thani for Humanitarian Services (Qatar) — as the representative of South Africa requested disaggregation of funds. The representative of Iran requested list of the group’s current projects and the countries in which it operated.
Femmes unies pour un avenir meilleur (Togo) — as the representative of Nicaragua requested that it provide a list of its activities.
Fondation Kalipa pour le Développement (Democratic Republic of the Congo) — as the representative of South Africa asked about its website and where its projects were located.
Girls Education Mission International (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa sought clarification about its sources of income and website.
Gulshan-e-John (Pakistan) — as the representative of South Africa asked for further information about its “fact-finding mission”.
HACEY's Health Initiative (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa asked which Governments and private sector organizations provided its financial assistance.
Int’l Centre for Women Empowerment & Child Dev. (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa sought clarification about the projects and activities it had undertaken. The representative of India asked about the role of two Ministers on its Board of Directors.
International Clergy Association (Ghana) — as the representative of South Africa said a hospital could not be managed without financial resources, and sought clarification about its budget.
International Movement for Advancement of Education Culture Social and Economic Development (India) — as the representative of India stressed the need to review its application more carefully, particularly its projects.
International Human Rights Protector’s Group (India) — as the representative of China pointed out that Taiwan was listed as a country on its website.
Iraqi Association for Public Policy and administration (Iraq) — as the representative of South Africa requested that it provide its latest financial statement.
Media and Gender Enlightenment Initiative (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa sought clarification about its website address. The representative of the United States reminded the Committee that there was no requirement to have a website in order to obtain consultative status.
Medical Women’s Association of Nigeria (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa sought clarification about the term “medical women”, projects undertaken, and funding from private sector organizations.
Réseau National des Organisations Féminines Pour la Démocratie, la Décentralisation, le Développement Durable et les Droits Humains du Mali ou Réseau Wassa (Mali) — as the representative of South Africa sought clarification about the projects it had undertaken.
Sanad Charity Foundation (Sudan) — as the representative of South Africa asked for clarification about the health and medical services it provided.
Society to Heighten Awareness of Women and Children Abuse (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa requested that it submit its latest financial statement.
The Voice Society (Pakistan) — as the representative of Pakistan requested that it provide a more detailed financial statement.
West Papua Interest Association (Indonesia) — as the representative of Venezuela sought clarification about its financial expenses. The representative of India noted that the Association lacked a structured financial framework. The representative of Iran expressed concern about the term “self-determination” in its application. The representative of China asked when the organization had completed its registration.
Women & Community Livelihood Foundation (Nigeria) — as the representative of Nicaragua requested clarification about the current status of its projects.
Women Educators Association of Nigeria (Nigeria) — as the representative of South Africa sought further information about its projects and activities.
Yay Gender Harmony (Indonesia) — as the representative of China noted that Taiwan was listed as a country on its website. The representative of Iran requested clarification about the term “gender harmony” in its application. The representative of South Africa emphasized that definitions such as “women’s empowerment” and “gender equality” provided by the organization were not correct.
Action Against Hunger USA (United States) — as the representative of China noted that Tibet was listed as a country on its website, asking the organization to clarify its position on that issue.
Action on Disability and Development (United Kingdom) — as the representative of South Africa asked for details of its budget deficit and requested its latest financial statement. The representative of the United Kingdom, speaking as an observer, said other organizations had been granted consultative status despite their budget deficits.
Advocacy Initiative for Development (AID) (United States) — as the representative of South Africa acknowledged its excellent work in Sierra Leone, and asked for information about projects in other African countries.
Arab-European Center of Human Rights and International Law (AECHRIL) (Norway) — as the representative of Sudan asked about upcoming projects and activities. The representative of India sought clarification about projects carried out in Syria and the State of Palestine.
Asistencia Legal por los Derechos Humanos, Asociación Civil (Mexico) — as the representative of Mauritania said it had not answered questions relating to membership rules and locations.
BJD Reinsurance Consulting, LLC (United States) — as the representative of India asked whether it was a profit-making company.
Bahrain Center for Human Rights (Denmark) — as the representative of Sudan requested its latest financial statement.
Campagne Internationale pour l’Abolition des Armes Nucléaires (Switzerland) — as the representative of China sought clarification about its position on Tibet.
Center of Political Analysis and Information Security (Russian Federation) — as the representative of the Russian Federation asked for further information about corporations with which it was working.
Citizens’ Alliance for North Korean Human Rights (Republic of Korea) — as the representative of China sought further information about its involvement in activities at the United Nations. The representative of Iran asked whether the organization had an office in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, and how it observed human rights in that country. The representative of South Africa asked for disaggregation of funds.
During an afternoon question-and-answer session, a representative of the USA Refugees & Immigrants Corp said the organization had undertaken various activities in south Florida, in areas ranging from voting to international trade.
The representative of Cuba asked for further information about the group’s financial expenditure and regional activities. The representative of South Africa asked about the connection between refugees, international trade law and sustainable development.
In response, that the organization’s representative said USA Refugees & Immigrants Corp was carrying out significant work in the Unites States, mainly in south Florida and Washington, D.C. Regarding its financial resources, she said it had received tax-free donations.
The foundation’s application was deferred.