Policy Strategy for Regulation of Charity Organizations in Post-Genocide Tigray

Mekelle:  27 February 2024 (Tigray Herald)

By Yerga Yaecobe

Policy Strategy for Regulation of Charity Organizations in Post-Genocide Tigray

Establishment of Regulatory Body: Implement the formation of a regulatory body specifically tasked with overseeing charity organizations operating in post-genocide Tigray. This body should consist of representatives from governmental agencies, NGOs, legal experts, and members of the Tigrayan community to ensure comprehensive oversight.

Enforcement of Strict Financial Controls: Enforce stringent financial controls to prevent embezzlement and misuse of funds within charity organizations. This includes regular audits, transparent financial reporting, and strict penalties for individuals found guilty of misappropriating funds.

Transparent Accountability Measures: Require charity organizations to maintain transparent accountability measures, such as publishing financial reports regularly and making them accessible to the public. This fosters trust among donors and ensures that funds are allocated appropriately to address the urgent needs of the Tigrayan population.

Training and Capacity Building: Provide training and capacity building initiatives for charity staff members on financial management, ethical conduct, and organizational governance. This empowers staff to uphold integrity and adhere to regulations, reducing the likelihood of misconduct.

Community Engagement and Oversight: Foster community engagement and involvement in the oversight of charity organizations. Establish community watchdog groups or committees to monitor the activities of charities and report any suspicious behavior or misuse of funds to the regulatory body.

Diaspora Engagement and Awareness: Engage with the Tigrayan diaspora community to raise awareness about the importance of donating to reputable and transparent charity organizations. Provide educational resources on how to identify trustworthy charities and ways to ensure donations reach those in urgent need.

Legal Framework and Enforcement: Strengthen the legal framework governing charity organizations and ensure swift and decisive enforcement of regulations. Implement penalties, including fines and criminal charges, for individuals or organizations found guilty of charity fraud or financial misconduct.

Whistleblower Protection: Establish mechanisms to protect whistleblowers who report instances of fraud or misuse of funds within charity organizations. Ensure confidentiality and immunity for individuals who come forward with credible information, encouraging transparency and accountability.

Collaboration with International Bodies: Collaborate with international organizations and regulatory bodies to exchange best practices, receive technical assistance, and strengthen regulatory mechanisms for overseeing charity organizations operating in post-genocide Tigray.

Continuous Monitoring and Evaluation: Conduct regular monitoring and evaluation of the regulatory framework and enforcement mechanisms to identify areas for improvement and ensure effectiveness in preventing charity fraud and misuse of funds. Adjust policies and strategies as needed to address emerging challenges and protect the integrity of charitable activities in Tigray.

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