Organisations asked to divert some funds to fight pandemicGovernment has asked domestic and foreign NGOs to divert 5 to 20 percent for pandemic relief depending on the size of their budget.
Prithvi Man Shrestha
With the country buckling under a brutal second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, the government has asked domestic and international non-governmental organisations to divert their funds to fight the pandemic.
They have been asked to divert 5 to 20 percent of their approved budget for Covid-19 preparedness and response.
The Social Welfare Council, the regulator of the non-government organisations, has said that the allocated funds can be used in supplying medical goods and equipment, relief materials for the poor and in running small construction projects to employ the migrant workers who have returned to villages from the urban centres.
“They should divert the fund depending on the size of the approved budget,” said Pushkar Khati, member secretary at the council. “They can use the fund in specific areas after submitting action plans to us.”
Non-government organisations with an approved budget of up to Rs 50 million should divert 20 percent of their budgets for Covid-19 preparedness and response purposes, those with budget upto Rs 100 million 15 percent, those with budget up to Rs 250 million 10 percent, those with budget up to Rs500 million 7 percent and those with more than Rs500million 5 percent of their budget to fight the pandemic, according to a notice issued by council Sunday.
This is the second time since the pandemic that the council has asked the non-government organisations to divert its funds for controlling it.
In April last year, the regulatory body had asked domestic and international NGOs to divert 20 percent of their funds to fight the pandemic.
According to the council, international NGOs spent Rs1.5 billion in donating health equipment and running livelihood programmes for those affected by the pandemic last year. Likewise, local NGOs spent around Rs 270 million after pandemic hit the country last year.
“We fixed the areas and the scope of investment as some of the funding meant for fighting Covid-19 was not targeted as much as expected earlier,” said Khati.
According to him, after the expenditures, local and international NGOs should submit details to the council about spending within a week.
Domestic and international NGOs could mobilise new funds and use the entire fund to implement the new programme for preparedness and response against the pandemic.
“There is no need for diversion of funds in case of new funding,” said Khati.