The Non-Governmental Organizations Regulatory Commission(Establishment) Bill, 2016, is one the 1716 bills currently pending in the 8th National Assembly.
The bill was introduced in the House of Representatives on June 2, 2016 by Umar Buba Jibril, a lawmaker from Kogi State, elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The bill was first read on June 2, 2016, with a second reading on July 14, 2016. It was thereafter referred to the House Committee on CSOs and Development Partners.
The proposed controversial law seeks to establish a federal agency responsible for the supervision, coordination and monitoring of Non-Governmental Organizations and Civil Society Organizations in Nigeria.
Many Nigerians have criticised the bill, with many seeing it as a ploy to stifle civil society groups and silence critical voices in the country.
A serving senator of the APC, Shehu Sani, vowed to fight the bill when it comes to the Senate.
“The bill on NGOs will reinforce those with tyrannical tendencies and further stifle rights to freedom of speech and assembly. I’ll oppose it,” he tweeted.
Chidi Odinkalu, a former chairman of the National Human Rights Commission, has launched a campaign against the bill, saying the proposed law would affect religious bodies and humanitarian agencies and organisations.
He also argued that the bill was unnecessary as there were already enough laws and institutions to regulate NGOs.