Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - New Lango committee formed



New Lango committee formed

Demonstrators shout slogans at the National Assembly during a protest against the then-proposed NGO law in July of 2015.
Demonstrators shout slogans at the National Assembly during a protest against the then-proposed NGO law in July of 2015. Vireak Mai

New Lango committee formed

The government has created a new interministerial committee to manage the activities of international NGOs, with an Interior Ministry official yesterday saying the body was intended to monitor organisations’ compliance with the controversial NGO Law.

The directive, signed on December 5 and published in the latest Royal Book, sets up a 33-member committee to ensure implementation of the Law on Associations and NGOs (Lango) among foreign institutions, demarcating the duties of each ministry.

The Economy Ministry is tasked with monitoring the tax obligations of NGOs, with the National Bank asked to track their financial operations. The committee is headed by the Interior Ministry’s Pol Lim, along with Foreign Ministry officials Ouch Borith and Keo Rith.

“We have not had a meeting yet. We had created the subcommittee to sit down with the Foreign Ministry to see which NGOs have signed a [memorandum of understanding], and how many NGOs are there and from which country,” said Lim.

Last year, the US-funded National Democratic Institute was shuttered for not having an MoU with the government, though the NGO maintained the government had not processed its application. It had previously been accused of aiding the now-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party. Local NGOs often critical of the government were also slapped with Lango-related tax notices by authorities.

Asked if more NGOs would be investigated following NDI’s closure, Lim would only say that the committee would look into all foreign NGOs’ activities.

San Chey, head of accountability group ANSA, said the development was concerning because it left interpretation of Lango up to the new committee.

MOST VIEWED

  • Without shoes or a helmet, a young cyclist steals the show

    Pech Theara gripped the curved handlebars of his rusty old bike, planted his bare feet on its pedals and stormed as fast as he could towards the finish line. The odds were against him as the 13-year-old faced off against kids with nicer bikes at

  • Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville expressway on schedule

    The construction of the more than $1.9 billion Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway has not been delayed despite the Covid-19 pandemic, with more than 26 per cent of the project completed and expected to finish in about two years, according to Ministry of Public Works and Transport secretary of

  • Singapore group seeks $14M in damages from PPSP over ‘breach of contract’

    Singapore-based Asiatic Group (Holdings) Ltd is seeking a minimum of $14.4 million relief from Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX)-listed Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone Plc (PPSP) for allegedly breaching a power plant joint venture (JV) agreement. Asiatic Group’s wholly-owned Colben System Pte Ltd and 95 per

  • Over 110 garment factories close

    A government official said on November 22 that at least 110 garment factories had closed in the first nine months of the year and left more than 55,000 workers without jobs – but union leaders worry those numbers could be much higher. Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training undersecretary

  • PM dispels lockdown rumours, gifts masks

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on November 12 denied rumours that he will lock down the country in response to increased Covid-19 fears, referring to them as propaganda aimed at destabilising the country. In a Facebook post, he said some people had spread rumours that the government

  • SilkAir adds flight to Phnom Penh schedule

    Silkair (Singapore) Pte Ltd is increasing its flight frequency between Phnom Penh and Singapore with a third weekly flight on Saturdays, according to Cambodia Airports’ Facebook page. The other flights offered are on Tuesdays and Sundays, with an estimated Phnom Penh arrival time at 5:35pm