Fifteen NGOs have been deregistered, their bank accounts frozen, assets repossessed and their names forwarded to the CID, Anti-Terror Police Unit and Interpol for investigation on suspicion of funding terror activities in Kenya and the Horn of Africa.
At a press conference on Tuesday afternoon, NGOs Co-ordination Board Executive director Fazul Mahamed Yusuf said precautions have been taken to curb the trend.
“Noting that NGOs are vulnerable to abuse as conduits of terrorism financing and money laundering, the Board has put measures in place to curb such occurrences.
“In view of this, the board warns NGOs that could be used for criminal activities that decisive legal action will be taken against them,” Yusuf said.
Yusuf announced the deregistration of 510 more NGOs for non-compliance in accordance with regulation 24 of the NGOs Co-ordination Regulation Act of 1992.
The Act requires NGOs to submit annual reports and audited accounts to the board or face prosecution.
The 510 NGOs have 21 days to comply with the requirement and reapply for registration justifying the renewal of their licenses.
Among them are 12 with incomes higher than Sh500 million that have not filed their audit reports and that will also be required to reapply for licenses.
They are: Adventist Development and Relief Agency International, Artsen Zonder Grenzen – Holland, Center for Health Solutions – Kenya, Concern Worldwide, FH Association, LVCT Health, Medecins Sans Frontieres – Switzerland, Belgium and France, Technoserve Kenya, Veterinaires Sans Frontieres Belgium and Water For Life.
The board additionally put NGO donors on notice saying they too could face prosecution for not ensuring that the organisations account for allocated funds.
“We shall hold donors accountable just as we do for NGOs if the funds they donate are used for criminal purposes,” Yusuf said.
The deregistration comes in the wake of heightened security and government efforts to clamp down terrorism and insecurity.
The National Assembly will in February next year resume debate on the controversial Security Laws (Amendment) Bill 2014 intended to enhance the ability of security organs to maintain safety.
The Bill has however come under sharp criticism by a section of NGOs, civil society groups, the Council of Governors and opposition leaders allied to Cord who term it suppressive and draconian.