The National Platform of the Civil Society Forum of the Eastern Partnership calls on Parliament to adopt without delay the law on noncommercial organizations in final reading, namely in the variant approved by the legal commission for appointments and immunities on May 28, so that the law could take effect right away. A call to this effect signed by the organizations that are members of the Platform was transmitted to Parliament.
The signatories welcome the positive appraisal of the legal commission and the fact that no amendments that would hinder the activity of SCOs were introduced. This way, the bill can be given a final reading. As it does not impose additional measures for ensuring the implementation of the law, it can take effect in a month of its publication in the Official Gazette, according to the general rule.
Among the signatories of the call is the Legal Resources Center of Moldova. Contacted by IPN for a comment, the Center’s president Vladislav Gribincea said the criticism leveled at the bill has nothing to do with this. “These are inventions by those who probably didn’t read the bill,” he stated, noting that a lot of energy is wasted on matters that would contribute to the improvement of the activity of SCOs. According to him, the bill is very good and was supported by renowned organizations, such as the Council of Europe.
As regards President Igor Dodon’s assertion that he will not promulgate this bill, Vladislav Gribincea said he does not want to comment on political statements.
The bill on noncommercial organizations was drafted by a working group created by the Ministry of Justice in 2016. This included representatives of civil society. The bill was repeatedly proposed for public debates by the Ministry and has all the necessary appraisals. It was given a first reading by Parliament on May 3, 2018. On May 28, 2020, the Parliament’s legal commission for appointments and immunities proposed adopting the bill in the final reading.
The draft law simplifies the registration of noncommercial organizations, providing also for the free registration of these, and removes the rigid internal organization structure imposed by the current legislation. It limits authorities’ possibilities of exerting pressure on NGOs and excludes the unjustified limitations on the founding of NGOs by particular categories of persons. It also bans the NGOs from supporting candidates in elections and sets clear limits on the relations between these and parties. The bill institutes the framework legislation on the financing and supporting of NGOs by the state.
The National Platform of the Civil Society Forum of the Eastern Partnership was created in 2011 and currently has 84 members, six of which are umbrella organizations for another 255 organizations.