The seminar on Governance structure of Not-For-Profit Organisations was held on the 26th of October 2017 at the Board room of the Yar’adua centre. The Guest speaker for the Event was Mr Joshua Mintz, The vice president and Chief Legal Counsel of the Mac Arthur Foundation.
The discussion was centred around the need for a better governance structure for Non-Governmental Organisations. The Guest speaker advocated for firm coordination by fostering the culture of governance within the existing government institutions. Drawing suggestions from the American structure, Mr Joshua Mintz advised that it is imperative that NGO’s are made to operate within a frame work of governance, a frame work that eschews corruption, promotes transparency and ensures that there is focus on projects goals. There were debates for and against self-regulation and external regulation arising from the proposed NGO bill before the National Assembly and it was suggested that more roles should be given to Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) as the passage of the bill will lead to usurping their regulatory powers, contravene the provisions of the Constitution, and also lead to duplicity of Government Parastatals as suggested in the bill for the creation of a regulatory commission.
Some of the speakers expressed the fears of politicising and stifling the freedom of the Media, civil society, and the Unions if NGO’s are controlled by government institution. Other suggestions raised at the seminar includes strengthening the CAC to regulate the organisations in a way that does not lose Sight of the NGO’s coming up with self-regulatory governance structure. As well as setting up parameters in place for interventionist/ donors.
The seminar witnessed Experts and Dignitaries such Prof Yemi Akinsheye George, The Director of the Center for Socio-Legal Studies. Dr. Kole Shetima, the African Director of the MacArthur Foundation, Prof Peter Akper SAN, OFR, Prof. Amaeze Guobadia, FNIALS and the Former Director General of NIALS. Sanatu M. Shafi, Director of Incorporated Trustees of CAC, and Directors from Federal Ministry Of Justice, Nigerian Bar Association etc.