Locsin issues dire warning on foreign funds for Philippine Non-Government Organizations

 Teodoro Locsin Jr.

FOREIGN Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. yesterday said European countries giving donations to Philippine Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) should first get Manila’s approval before releasing the funds.

In his tweet, Locsin warned the government will “deregister them” in the Securities and Exchange Commission should the host countries fail to follow his memorandum.

“Over a month ago I fired off a memo to all our European embassies to tell their host governments to clear any and all donations to their NGOs in the Philippines with the Department of Foreign Affairs,” he tweeted.

Locsin added “Or we will deregister them in the SEC. If that hasn’t been done, do it now.”

European Union Head of Delegation in the Philippines Ambassador Franz Jessen said they are in touch with the Philippine government with regard to the issue.

“We have a constructive and very regular dialogue with the government on this issue. As concerns the audit, it is still ongoing,” Jessen said.

In March, the Philippine government urged the European Union to stop funding local organizations in the country allegedly linked to the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA), which is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines revealed that the EU has reportedly released its first tranche of more than 621,000 Euros (PHP36,663,840) to the Rural Missionaries of the Philippines and is expected to release 1.3 million Euros (PHP76,752,000) this year until the Philippine government flagged them.

The Belgian government, on the other hand, has allocated a 15-million Euro (PHP885,600,000) grant or 3 million Euros per year to some Belgian NGOs for the 2017-2021 program.