NGOs spend Sh.197.9b on projects in last financial year

Interior PS Raymond Omollo. [File, Standard]

Non-governmental organisations spent a total of Sh.197.9 billion on projects in the last financial year as indicated in a report on the sector’s contribution to the economy.

An annual report released on June 17, indicates that the NGO's investment in charitable courses increased by Sh12.4 billion compared to the previous year. 

Internal Security and National Administration Principal Secretary, Dr Raymond Omollo during the launch of the NGO week held in Nairobi lauded the partnership between the organizations and the government on various development programmes.

“The PBO sector has long been recognised as crucial actors in driving sustainable development, and working at the forefront to address pressing societal challenges,” he said.

NGOs are now called public benefit organisations (PBOs) following the operationalization of PBO Act, 2013 last month.

The Government operationalised the PBO Act as part of its commitment to provide an enabling environment for non-state actors to operate effectively and enjoy the civic rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution. 

“The Act provides a broader civic space and is arguably one of the most progressive legislation in guaranteeing the freedom of association and assembly as provided for in Article 36 of our Constitution,”  said PS Omollo. 

He lauded them for their swift response during disasters like floods and for providing emergency relief of food, clean water, medical supplies, hygiene kits, education materials, and temporary shelter to affected communities.

However, he raised an issue of concern in which only  2,828 out of 12,000 registered NGOs filed their annual reports as required by law.

 “Despite having over 10,000 active NGOs, the actual contribution of this sector to the economy remains unclear due to these reporting deficiencies,” he noted. 

The PS directed the PBO Authority to take firm action against the non-compliant organizations as per the law. 

Caroline Nyambura, PBO manager while reading the report explained that out of the Sh. 197.9 billion spent by NGOs, Sh.124billion went to projects, a 73billion was used in administration cost while 49.1 billion to personnel and monuments.

Nyambura said that the funds were largely used in health 33.4 per cent, children relief and disaster management, multisectoral sector education and environment,water and sanitation agriculture youth and governance.

Executive Director Mutuma Nkanata said the Authority would provide policy guidelines to all NGOs on the transition to the new legal regime. 

Mr Nkanata said the Authority was working with stakeholders to develop regulations that will govern the registration and regulation of the sector.

“Under the Authority’s policy guideline role, continue to publish the Annual NGO Sector Report and provide guidance to PBOs on Kenya’s national development plan, including aligning their programmes to the Bottom-up Economic Transformation Agenda,” he said.

The launch marked the start of NGOs Week 2024, an event aimed at providing a platform for charitable organisations to showcase what they do and share experiences. 

This year’s NGOs Week is themed "Building Synergy for a Sustainable Future".

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