Non-Governmental Organizations Committee Recommends 16 Groups for Consultative Status, Defers Action on 41 in Fourth Day of Resumed Session

ECOSOC/6921-NGO/873
24 May 2018
23rd & 24th Meetings (AM & PM)

Non-Governmental Organizations Committee Recommends 16 Groups for Consultative Status, Defers Action on 41 in Fourth Day of Resumed Session

While deferring action on 41 organizations, the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations today recommended 16 entities for special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, as it continued its 2018 resumed session.

The 19-member Committee vets applications submitted by non-governmental organizations, recommending general, special or roster status on the basis of such criteria as the applicant’s mandate, governance and financial regime.  Organizations enjoying 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.

Several non-governmental organizations saw action on their applications postponed because Committee members requested further information about the details of their projects and activities, financial status, funding sources, memberships, partnerships and publications.

Also today, the Committee recommended the reclassification of one organization from special to general consultative status, while deferring action on requests from two groups.  It also took note of the merger of one organization.

Speaking at the outset of the meeting, Jorge Dotta (Uruguay), Chair of the Committee, told delegates that the resumed session — in its fourth day — was behind schedule, but he hoped that it would be able to step up its effectiveness.

The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations will meet again at 10 a.m. on Friday, 25 May, to continue its work.

Interactive Discussion

The representative of World Historic and Cultural Canal Cities Cooperation Organization (China) said that his group’s mission was to promote the value and recognition of canals.  It organized various events, symposiums and forums, served as a platform for canal cities, and channelled resources for canal development.  There were at least 500 canals worldwide, most of them in Western Europe.  They faced many concerns, including ecological conversation, green development and water-based canal planning.  Canal waterways had a major role to play in urban planning and the development of communities.

The representative of the United States requested additional information on which organizations the group sought to partner with and what methods it would seek to expand its operations.

The representative of World Historic and Cultural Canal Cities Cooperation Organization said that it was interested in connecting with the New York State Canal company.  In 2017, the world canal forum was held in New York.  He said he looked forward to collaborating with canal authorities in Western Europe including in Germany and Ireland.

The representative of the United States requested additional information on its funding, mainly the income classified under “other sources of funding”.

The representative of World Historic and Cultural Canal Cities Cooperation Organization said the income categorized was donations but it had not been invoiced as such at the time.  For that reason, the accountant categorized the income as “other”.

The representative of the United States asked about income classified under Government funding.

The Committee then postponed consideration of its application.

The representative of Caritas in Veritate International USA (United States) said his organization served the poor.  It worked to bring charity to the poorest by providing temporary shelter, education and job training, and health-care services.

The representative of Venezuela requested additional information on the organization’s presence in Latin America and its related funding.

The representative of Caritas in Veritate International USA (United States) said the organization had only one project in Latin America and that was in Haiti.

The representative of Cuba requested additional information relating to its affiliation in Latin America.

The representative of Caritas in Veritate International USA (United States) said that it had volunteers from four countries in Latin America.

The representative of Cuba asked whether the volunteers travelled to Haiti.

The representative of Caritas in Veritate International USA (United States) said that the organization relied on volunteers to provide services when needed for projects in Haiti.

The representative of Cuba requested additional information on project development and whether it coordinated with national authorities.

The representative of Caritas in Veritate International USA (United States) said it did not work independently.  It was invited to provide assistance.

The representative of Cuba said his delegation was satisfied with the answers.

The Committee then granted the organization special consultative status.

The representative of the Engineering Association for Development and Environment (Iraq) said his organization was working in Iraq, focusing on rebuilding the housing destroyed during the war.  It specialized in the environment, development and antiquity preservation, he added, noting its partnerships with United Nations entities.  It provided advice and was registered with several international organizations.  It had professional consultants, specializing in their field and received funding from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and other United Nations organizations.

The representative of Turkey requested additional information on its funding.

The representative of Engineering Association for Development and Environment (Iraq) said it built 20 schools in Mosul with financing from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.  It also partnered with another international organization.

The representative of Turkey requested information on its database relating to infrastructure construction projects focused on environmental conservation.

The representative of Engineering Association for Development and Environment (Iraq) said the database was focused on providing environmental advice.  It was also partnered with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) WASH campaign, participating in various meetings and guided by its work.

The representative of Turkey requested additional information on its work regarding administrative corruption.

The representative of Engineering Association for Development and Environment (Iraq) said its work mainly focused on humanitarian aspects, but it also focused on fighting corruption working with local organizations.  All work was voluntary without pay.

The representative of Turkey asked for additional information on its projects.

The Committee then postponed consideration of its application.

The representative of World Association for Sexual Health (United Kingdom) said it was her second time before the Committee and her organization was open to any questions from the floor.

The representative of Nicaragua said her question had already been answered on 23 May, but requested clarity on the answer.

The representative of Iran requested information on its activities in the Middle East and whether financing was provided by host countries.

The representative of World Association for Sexual Health (United Kingdom) said that it worked the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on sexual education and with the World Health Organization (WHO) in the development of international disease classification.  On its work in the Middle East, she said it worked mainly with academic and medical associations focusing particularly on sexual health.

The representative of Iran requested the name of the countries in the Middle East where it was active and additional information on its work with WHO.

The representative of World Association for Sexual Health (United Kingdom) noted the organization’s work in Lebanon and Egypt.  It also helped WHO develop and draft its documents on sexual health.

The representative of Nicaragua said the issues that the organization worked on were sensitive, requesting additional information how it would respect the positions of other Member States.

The representative of Uruguay expressed concern that there was no webcast of the session.

The representative of World Association for Sexual Health (United Kingdom) said it fully respected all principles of the United Nations Charter.  It would continue to work with full respect of all human rights.

The representative of Greece asked whether Nicaragua requested the answers in writing.

The representative of Nicaragua said she did have questions and requested answers in writing.

The representative of Greece said he had the impression that the non‑governmental organization had already answered all questions.

The representative of United States requested classification on pending questions.

The representative of Cuba said it was important to follow the practice of granting 10 minutes per organization.  The Committee had postponed granting status to the organization from China because it had run out of time.

The representative of Iran said it was essential to treat all non-governmental organizations the same way.  He noted that the status of several non-governmental organizations was postponed because the Committee had run out of time.

The representative of Nicaragua said her understanding was that the Committee had to move on as time had elapsed.  That was why she did not move on to ask the questions.

The representative of Israel said he did not agree with deferring an application without a clear question.  That was not a common practice of the Committee.  If members had a question they should ask it now, if not status must be granted to the organization.

The representative of Nicaragua requested additional information on the outcome of the organization’s meeting in Washington, D.C.

The representative of Uruguay thanked Nicaragua’s delegate for her flexibility.

The Committee then postponed consideration of its application.

Requests for Special Consultative Status

The Committee recommended that the Economic and Social Council grant special consultative status to the following 15 organizations:

Women’s Home & Overseas Missionary Society (United States);

ASPAM Foundation (India);

Al-Anwar Al Najafia Foundation for Culture and Development (Iraq);

Centre for Gender Justice and Women Empowerment (Cameroon);

Community Initiatives for Development in Pakistan (Pakistan);

Healthier Hearts Foundation (India);

Hope Ek ASHA (India);

International Public Foundation "Roza Otunbayeva Initiative" (Krgyzstan);

Iraq Al-Amal Association (Iraq);

Markengee Home for Orphans and Widows (Nigeria);

Professional Evaluation & Certification Board — Educational & Welfare Society (India);

Pacific Islands Association of Non-Governmental Organisations (Fiji);

Patiala Foundation (India);

Savera Society for Human Initiatives (India); and

Sierra Leone Campus Civitan International (Sierra Leone).

The Committee postponed consideration of the following 38 organizations:

Women in International Security (United States) — as the representative of China, noting that the group’s website referred to Taiwan as a country, asked that it use the correct United Nations terminology.

ARYAB HATT SEVA SANSTHAN (India) — as the representative of India requested specific details of its work in building and operating public toilets in her country.

Akhil Bharatiya Human Rights Organisation (India) — as the representative of Pakistan, noting that the group’s website was not working, requested that it provide samples of its publications.

Al-Imdaad Trust (South Africa) — as the representative of South Africa requested a list of its projects and activities in her country.  She also requested a detailed list of the 70 countries in which the candidate said it operated, together with a corresponding list of projects and activities in those countries.

Al-Shafa’a Humanitarian Organization (Iraq) — as the representative of Venezuela requested clarification of the group’s registration status.

Ambedkar Center for Justice and Peace (India) — as the representative of India asked that the Secretariat check whether it had responded to questions put to it during the regular session, and if not, to reiterate those questions to it.

Anciens esclaves nouveaux citoyens (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania, stating that slavery did not exist in his country, requested that the candidate identify where it did.

Associación Red de Mujeres Afrolatinoamericanas, Afrocaribeñas y de la Diáspora (Nicaragua) — as the representative of Nicaragua requested details about the financial assistance it received from partner organizations.

Association du développement communautaire en Mauritanie (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania asked how, with a limited budget, it covered a variety of issues such as human rights and health.

Association mauritanienne d'appui aux nécessiteux (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania requested that it explain why its administrative expenses surpassed 50 per cent.

Association pour la Diffusion des Droits Humains aux Peuples Autochtones (Humanitarian Law Agency) (Cameroon) — as the representative of Cuba requested more details about its financial contributors.

Citizen Association H.E.R.A. Health Education and Research Association (former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) — as the representative of Nicaragua requested examples of its most recent activities.

Club des Amis de la moughataa de Moudjeria (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania asked that it clarify its budget, given that in its financial statement it reported $304 in total income and $166 in expenditures.

Coalition of African Lesbians (South Africa) — as the representative of South Africa requested to know in which 19 African countries it operated, whether it was registered in those countries, and the outcomes that had been achieved through its work, advocacy and projects in those countries.

Coordination Waï (Eveil) relative à l'unité nationale et la lutte contre l'esclavage (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania asked why it was still interested in combating the death penalty, given that the last execution carried out in his country was in 1987 and that a moratorium on capital punishment was in place.

Danjuma Atta Eye Foundation (Nigeria) — as the representative of Azerbaijan requested information about its training programme, including themes, participation and duration, as well as results achieved and partners with which it collaborated.

Engineering Association for Development and Environment (Iraq) — as the representative of Turkey requested updated information on its plans to expand its operations to other countries.

Family Policy Institute (South Africa) — as the representative of South Africa requested that it give more details about its projects relating to defending the family.

Global Interfaith WASH Alliance India (India) — as the representative of China, noting that 100 per cent of its income came from a single donor, requested to know whether that donor was governmental or non-governmental.

Goringhaicona Khoi Khoin Indeginious Traditional Council (South Africa) — as the representative of South Africa requested more details about its training centres and language project.

Gulshan-e-John (Pakistan) — as the representative of Pakistan requested details about its youth development programme.

Individual Land Trust (Pakistan) — as the representative of Pakistan asked that it provide the names and nationalities of its current members and executive body, as well as details of how they were elected or nominated.

International Youth Council – Yemen Chapter (Yemen) — as the representative of China requested that it explain its stated affiliation with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.  The representative of Cuba asked that it clarify its financial information.

Jamia Islamiya Umar Faruk Charitable Trust Solapur (India) — as the representative of India, noting that the group had categorized itself as an international organization, asked if it was planning to undertake international activities, or if it was already doing so, to provide details.

Kurdistan Institute for Human Rights (Iraq) — as the representative of Venezuela requested further clarification about its country of registration.

Legal Advice Centre (Kenya) — as the representative of Burundi asked about its activities undertaken in 2017.

Ligue Mauritanienne pour l'appui aux initiatives associatives (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania asked, given the number of projects undertaken by the candidate, whether it received funding in addition to contributions from its members.

Lion Damien Club (South Africa) — as the representative of South Africa requested that it elaborate on its statement that it was actively working on a plan to solve the situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo by partaking in secret mediation efforts aimed at removing the President of that country.  She also asked that it identify its partners, as well as its law firm.

Organisation Attawassoul pour la Santé, la Femme et l'Enfant (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania requested details about a laboratory it was establishing to diagnose diseases, and whether it worked independently or in cooperation with the Ministry of Health.

Pak Special Persons Welfare Society (Pakistan) — as the representative of Pakistan requested an update on philanthropic donations for the construction of a state-of-the-art complex.  He also asked whether work on that facility had started, and for the candidate to update the Committee on its funding sources.

People’s Cultural Centre (India) — as the representative of India requested more information about the funding and nature of specific projects.

Regional Centre for International Development Cooperation Limited (Uganda) — as the representative of Burundi asked that it share the outcome of its research in social justice.

SOS EXCLUS pour la protection et l'épanouissement de la famille, de l'enfant et des personnes vulnérables (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania requested more specifics about the nature of funding it had received from the private sector.

SOS Urgence (Mauritania) — as the representative of Mauritania, noting that the candidate sought to promote gender equality and fair and equitable development, asked how it could be that all 30 of its affiliated groups were women’s associations.  Did it confine itself to the promotion of women’s interests or to the promotion of society as a whole, he wondered.

Social Services Trust (India) — as the representative of India requested to know more about the candidate’s advocacy and lobbying activities, which it said was becoming an increasingly important portion of its work.

Organisation tunisienne de développement social (Tunisia) — as the representative of Nicaragua requested details about projects it would undertake this year and next.

Swadhikar (India) — as the representative of India requested details on its disaster management project as well as an explanation of how that undertaking was helping it fulfill its broader aims and objectives.

The New Woman Foundation (Egypt) — as the representative of Burundi asked what the candidate intended to do to overcome its funding challenge, and the representative of Cuba, posing a similar question, asked that it provide details of its 2016 and 2017 budgets.

Reclassification

The Committee recommended that the Economic and Social Council grant reclassification to the following organization:

Imam Ali’s Popular Students Relief Society (Iran) — from special to general.

It deferred consideration of reclassification of the following organizations:

Institute of Noahide Code (United States) — from special to general — as the representative of Cuba requested clarification of its relationship with the National Endowment for Democracy.

International Transport Workers’ Federation (United Kingdom) — from roster to general — as the representative of Cuba requested clarification of its general nature.

Merger

Regarding the Ship and Ocean Foundation (Japan), which has had special consultative status since 2008, the Committee took note of its merger on 1 April 2015 with the Sasakawa Peace Foundation (United States), which was granted roster status in 1996.  It went on to recommend that the Economic and Social Council grant the Sasakawa Peace Foundation special consultative status.

For information media. Not an official record.