Phnom Penh: The Royal Government Technical Working Group accepts some points, rejects some points and needs to explain more about the proposal to amend the Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations Called LANGO. But the working group will continue to discuss before submitting to the government for a decision.
The Royal Government's Working Group to Facilitate Resolutions and Requests of Civil Society Organizations on 17 February continued the meeting to examine the reasons And the contents of Article 14 of the Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations, which civil society organizations have proposed to be amended. The meeting took place at the Ministry of Interior under the chairmanship of Mr. Bun Hon, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Interior.
Chin Malin, secretary of state at the Ministry of Justice, who attended the meeting, said: "We are reviewing all the proposals to see if they are valid. Must have a legal basis or not. "We look at legal aspects and experiences in other countries."
"At this technical working group level, we see that some of the proposals we can accept, some of which we do not accept, and some proposals," he said. "Some leave to discuss and exchange views with civil society to better understand the purpose and intent of the proposal."
He said that after the technical working group decides, the decision will be passed to the leadership and through discussions with civil society before the government decides whether Will be amended or not or to make any article.
The Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations, which has 9 chapters and 39 seals, was approved in August 2015. But many civil society groups have reacted to Article 14 of the law, saying there are restrictions on their activities. .
Kan Savang, Comfrel Observer and Advocacy Coordinator, said yesterday that the 14 articles proposed for amendment included Articles 1, 7 and 7. , 8, 9, 10, 11, 20, 24, 25, 26, 30, 31, 32 and Article 35. However, the most important articles that affect civil society are Articles 10, 24 and 26. Article 10 deals with changes in accounting, change of address and change of chairman, which require notification.
Article 24 also has a strong impact because it deals with the neutrality of civil society organizations to political parties. This article does not clearly define neutrality. This is a challenge for civil society organizations. This is according to Mr. Kan Savang.
"The law speaks of neutrality, but there is no clear definition of how much it is considered," he said. Neutral. It's a dangerous point to say that there are personal matters and there is a coffee discussion about work involving individuals who work for a political party. Is a point that shows neutrality or not. "This is important to be clear."
He added that another article is Article 26, which deals with activity reports and financial statements. This article requires civil society organizations to submit annual activity and financial reports to the government. This article is also related to other articles that determine the removal of civil society organizations from the list of the Ministry of Interior.