Finishing 2018 Substantive Session, Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations Presents Draft Report, Addresses Pending Applications

7 February 2018
15th Meeting (AM)

Finishing 2018 Substantive Session, Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations Presents Draft Report, Addresses Pending Applications

The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations today concluded substantive work of its 2018 regular session with the presentation of the body’s draft report, which will be finalized for adoption later this month.

It also took note of several quadrennial reports submitted by non‑governmental organizations in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, took note of requests for name changes and withdrawal of consultative status and closed the applications of organizations which had not responded to the Committee’s last three reminders.

The 19-member Committee considers applications for consultative status and requests for reclassification submitted by non-governmental organizations.  Once an application has been reviewed and approved by the Committee it is considered recommended for consultative status.  Organizations which are granted general and special status can attend meetings of the Council and issue statements, while those with general status can also speak during meetings and propose agenda items.  Organizations with roster status can only attend meetings.

The Committee’s report on the current session, contained in document E/C.2/2018/CRP.34, which was presented by Rapporteur Farid Jabrayilov (Azerbaijan), would be finalized through informal consultations.

Committee Chair Jorge Dotta (Uruguay) made closing remarks.

The Committee will reconvene to conclude its regular session on Friday, 23 February.

Review of Quadrennial Reports

The Committee took note of the following quadrennial reports submitted by non-governmental organizations in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, contained in document E/C.2/2018/CRP.4:  Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology 2011-2014; Sulabh International 2011-2014; World Habitat Foundation 2012-2015; US Human Rights Network Inc. 2012-2015; United Methodist Church-General Board of Global Ministries 2012-2015; Universal Peace Federation 2012-2015; World Organisation Against Torture 2010-2013; and World Vision International 2012-2015.

Committee members posed questions related to two reports on that list.

Regarding the 2010-2013 report of the World Organisation Against Torture, the representative of Cuba requested that the group provide more information about governmental assistance it had received.

Regarding the 2012-2015 report of World Vision International, the representative of Turkey requested more information on the organization’s memorandum of understanding and letter of collaboration that it had finalized with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS).

Name Change Requests

Turning to other business, the Committee took note of the following requests from organizations wishing to change their names, as listed in documents E/C.2/2018/CRP.5 and E/C.2/2018/C.6:  Amuta for NGO Responsibility to Institute for NGO Research; Centre National d’Information sur les Droits des Femmes et des Familles to Fédération National des CIDFF; Disarm Education Fund Inc. to Global Health Partners, Inc.; Kids Included Together San Diego Inc. to Kids Included Together; Law Enforcement Against Prohibition Educational Fund to Law Enforcement Action Partnership, Inc.; Smile of the Child to The Smile of the Child; Track Impunity Always/Association suisse contre l’impunite to TRIAL International; United States Asian American Law Enforcement Foundation, Inc. to International Law Enforcement Federation; and ZOA Vluchtelingenzorg to Stichting ZOA.

Regarding Global Health Partners Inc., the representatives of Nicaragua and Mauritania requested that the organization explain the reasons for the name change.

Regarding the Law Enforcement Action Partnership, Inc., the representative of Mauritania requested that the organization explain the reasons for the name change.

Regarding TRIAL International, the representative of Nicaragua said she had no problem with the name change per se, but the Committee needed to know the reasons behind it.  The representative of Turkey asked if the group could say whether it had changed its focus, management or financials in parallel with its name change.

Regarding the International Law Enforcement Federation, the representative of Mauritania requested that the organization explain the reasons for its name change.

Requests for Withdrawal of Consultative Status

The Committee then took note of requests from Partnership Network International, Honeypot Village and Asociación de Técnicos Superiores y Peritos Judiciales de Andalucía to withdraw their consultative status due to their dissolution (document E.C/2018/CRP.33).

Deferred Applications — Close of Applications

Next, the Committee decided to recommend to the Council to close consideration, without prejudice, of applications from the following organizations which had not responded to its last three reminders:  American Jewish World Service, Inc.; Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment; Association organisation populaire pour l'enseignement des droits humains; Center for Democracy and Technology; International Gulf Organization FZ-LLC; International Media Support; North Korea Intellectuals Solidarity; Orion Projects Private Limited; People's Right to Information and Development Implementing Society of Mizoram; Red de Seguridad y Defensa de América Latina Asociación Civil; Saafah Foundation for Transparency and Integrity; Society Without Violence Non-Governmental Organization; Tabriz Green Hearts Charity Society; Vietnamese Overseas Initiative for Conscience Empowerment; World Learning Inc.; and Yay Gender Harmony.

Adoption of the Report of the Committee

Farid Jabrayilov (Azerbaijan), Committee Rapporteur, introduced the Committee’s draft report (document E/C.2/2018/CRP.34), saying it would be updated with substantive details for consideration by the Committee on 23 February following informal consultations.

The Committee then authorized the Rapporteur to finalize the draft report.

Closing Remarks

Committee Chair Jorge Dotta (Uruguay) said the body, in 2018, had reviewed 483 new and deferred applications for status, six requests for reclassification and one case of merger, for a total of 490 requests.  By comparison, during its 2017 session, the Committee had before it 530 requests, with a much higher number of deferred applications and slightly fewer new submissions.

Out of the 490 requests, the Committee recommended granting consultative status or reclassification of status to 224 organizations, he noted.  Recommendations to grant status were much higher among new applications than for deferred ones, illustrating the difficulties encountered by the Committee to act on sensitive issues and its tendency to defer consideration for many sessions.

He added that the Committee did not proceed to a second round of review of applications, a contradiction of its usual practice that contributed to a high number of deferred submissions on the agenda of the forthcoming resumed session.  He hoped that the Committee would find ways to revert to its practice of conducting a second round of consideration at its resumed session and beyond, as that would help the quality of its work, as well as its credibility.

Turning to quadrennial reports, he said the Committee devoted a full day to considering the 494 reports it had before it.  That would need to be considered in planning future sessions, as the number of such reports would continue to grow sharply.  On working methods, he said they must be adapted to reflect the Committee’s workload and civil society’s demands to engage with the United Nations.  Discussions on 5 February were thoughtful and interesting and further talks would be held in an informal setting in due course.

For information media. Not an official record.