Bangladesh August 14 2012Rights activists at a human chain on Tuesday demanded the government ensure transparency in disbursing funds to NGOs from the Bangladesh Climate Change Trust Fund (BCCTF).

They said a speculation is there that the government may distribute funds among NGOs from the trust fund but the civil society has not yet got any information about that.

Seven civil-society climate networks and 10 non-government organisations (NGOs) organised the human chain in front of the National Press Club in the city.

Mustafa Kamal Akanda of EquityBD, Prodip Kumar Roy of Campaign for Sustainable Rural Livelihood, Badrul Alam of Bangladesh Krishak Federation, Mahbub Haque of Bangladesh Centre for Human Rights and Development, Mizanur Rahman Bijoy of Network on Climate Change Bangladesh and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of EquityBD, among others, spoke at the human chain.

Prodip Kumar Roy said the government had declared to provide climate funds to 53 NGOs in March 2011 and later postponed it amid criticism by the media and the civil society.

In September 2011, the government, in a circular, said it will form a committee to review the decision.

Mizanur Rahman Bijoy said the government, in fact, has no criteria and policy to deal with the NGOs.

He demanded a concrete bottom-up policy in this regard and must select NGOs based on fair governance, existence and proven commitment.

Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said the government must not lose the opportunity to set a good example in providing funds among NGOs.

He said all climate funds, especially Bangladesh Climate Change Trust Fund (BCCTF) and Bangladesh Climate Change Resilience Fund (BCCRF), should be brought under a single channel, which should an autonomous foundation with democratic ownership where board will be represented by government and opposition, civil society and media. – UNB

Published in Daily Sun