Minister gives NPOs time to comply with Act

2015-07-20 14:00
Bathabile Dlamini. (GCIS)

Bathabile Dlamini. (GCIS)

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Durban - More than half of the 140 513 non-profit organisations registered on the Department of Social Development’s NPO Database are in breach of key legislation that regulates them.

NPOs registered on the database are required to submit annual financial reports to ensure greater transparency and would normally face removal from the roll if they fail to do so.

However, the Department of Social Development has issued a moratorium on the deregistration of NPOs.

Spokesperson Lumka Oliphant said the minister has decided there will be no deregistration until she has satisfied herself "that the department has done all it can to assist NPOs with compliance".

Awareness campaign

Thousands of organisations were deregistered in 2012, Oliphant said in a statement.  

“Following the deregistration of thousands of non-profit organisations (NPOs) for non-compliance with the NPO Act (Act No.71 of 1997) towards the end of 2012, the Department of Social Development has spent R2.5m on an awareness and educational campaign aimed at helping NPOs improve their compliance,” she said.

“Currently, there are 140 513 registered NPOs and 87 565 of these are not compliant with the provisions of the NPO Act.”

“Due to this high rate of non-compliance by NPOs, the Minister of Social Development Bathabile Dlamini has put a moratorium on the deregistration of NPOs, in the process reregistering all NPOs deregistered in 2012. This is in an effort to encourage compliance by NPOs and adopting a developmental approach in addressing the administrative matters relating compliance,” Oliphant said.

‘The year of NPOs’

During Dlamini's public participation programmes, South Africans have raised concerns about the process of compliance stating that it is misunderstood, expensive and cumbersome, the statement read.

The campaign was rolled out nationally to assist NPOs with compliance and increase access by NPOs to the department’s NPO officials for direct, face-to-face service, according to the department.

"To underline her serious intention on this matter, Minister Dlamini has also declared this year as the year of the NPOs,” Oliphant said.

“Through the awareness campaign so far, the department has registered 1 415 NPOs, received 1 973 outstanding annual reports, as well as responded to 2 593 compliance status inquiries by NPOs.”

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