Min. of Solidarity claims 236 NGOs received foreign funding
Minister of Social Solidarity Ghada Waly - YOUM7/Hassan Tallal
By RANDA EL-BANNA

CAIRO: The Ministry of Social Solidarity announced that, according to its findings, 236 NGOs have received 282 million EGP (U.S. $40.3 milion) from foreign organizations in 2013.

Further, Minister Ghada Waly stated that 129 NGOs received 235 donations worth 159 million EGP from 117 donor organizations, which means that there are NGOs that have received money more than once since January, during an interview on Dream 2 channel on Monday.

Waly referred to the law organizing the work of NGOs, noting that there are terms for the approval of new NGOs, the most important of which is that new NGOs require the approval of the “competent authorities,” whereby any NGO must be investigated by the state to ascertain its intended activities.

She added that the NGOs law will “sustain the balance between social service and the host country’s welfare.”

Foreign funding for NGOs has been the source of major controversy since 2011, spurred by various claims that several NGOs received foreign funding in order to incite people to start the revolution.

In 2012, a foreign funding case was opened against 43 people working at various different NGOs, including U.S. based Freedom House. There were 19 Americans among the defendants, along with other nationalities. Judicial authorities referred the case to Cairo Criminal Court to give its verdict regarding the foreign financing of NGOs, according to CNN Arabic.

The court placed all the defendants on travel ban lists and watch lists, based on accusations of establishing and running branches for international organizations without permission from Egyptian authorities and receiving foreign funding from these organizations in order to run the branches and interfere in Egypt’s internal affairs.

The travel ban was eventually lifted on February 29, 2012.

Further, the April 6 Movement has also faced major accusations of receiving foreign financing. However, founder of movement Ahmed Maher said on the program “’Al-Hawa” on September 7, 2013 that April 6 did not receive any foreign funding and anyone who claims this “must provide solid proof for such accusations.”

Cairo Court for Urgent Matters issued a verdict Monday banning all activities of the April 6 Movement in all Egyptian governorates, and ordered the State to take possession of its headquarters.

The court’s verdict said that one of the charges against the movement was “receiving illegal funds” and “lack of loyalty to their home country.”

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