The Center for the Development of Non-Governmental Organizations (CRNVO) invites the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Human and Minority Rights to make the remaining decisions on allocating funds for NGO projects in 2020. Decisions for 6 published calls from the mentioned departments are missing.
We make the request for two key reasons:
First, we are in the 11th month of the current year and decisions for projects that need to be implemented, or at least start implementing, have not yet been made. In this way, the Law on Non-Governmental Organizations is violated, and the set legal concept on the annual allocation of funds for NGO projects is completely meaningless.
The second reason is that the allocation of funds in certain departments is rightly questioned by part of the non-governmental sector, which is why it is extremely important that all decisions are published so that an adequate analysis of allocation of funds can be conducted at the level of all ministries and so identify total failures of this year’s funding allocation.
The allegations of part of the non-governmental sector regarding the allocation of funds in the calls of the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare and the Ministry of Culture raised important questions: essential independence of evaluators evaluating projects, potential conflicts of interest in commissions, and even potential corruption in this process.
Based on the decisions on the allocation of funds published so far, which CRNVO analyzes, conclusions can already be drawn that support the suspicions that the allocation processes in certain departments are for serious review.
We remind you that from the beginning we have problematized the Government's decision that independent appraisers can be civil servants. It is clear that their independence was already disabled at that time, and everything after that is obviously a consequence of bad decisions of the Government which wanted to keep control over this process and thus over the non-governmental sector, and use the financing mechanism to create a parallel non-governmental sector. This points to a clear strategy to exclude a credible part of NGOs with experience and references from the allocation of funds in certain areas, and gives preference to organizations without experience, with questionable credibility, which in turn will not raise important issues and problematize the work of institutions.
If the analysis of data on the allocation of funds for NGO projects in 2020 confirms the validity of these suspicions, CRNVO will file criminal charges against the responsible persons who participated in these processes.
Ana Novakovic Đurović