Nicaragua Shuts Down 10 NGOs

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By LatAm Reports Editor

Five NGOs applied for its voluntary dissolution, including the foundation of the Nicaraguan Brewery Company, which awarded scholarships to young people with limited resources.

On Monday, the Nicaraguan government cancelled the legal personality to 10 non-profit organizations, including 5 that requested its voluntary dissolution, including the foundation of the Nicaraguan Brewery Company, which awarded study scholarships to young people with limited resources.

The dissolution of these 10 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) was approved by the Minister of the Interior, María Amelia Coronel, according to two ministerial agreements published in the Diario Oficial La Gaceta de Nicaragua, and on the same day that this portfolio marks 44 years of foundation.

According to the Government, 5 NGOs were illegal to comply with the laws regulating them while the other 5 were cancelled by voluntary dissolution.

This portfolio argued that it unilaterally closed these 5 NGOs for non-compliance with their obligations, in accordance with the laws regulating them, and hindering the control and surveillance of the Directorate-General for Registration and Control of Non-profit Bodies.

With the closure of these 10 NGOs, almost 3,500 such organizations are dissolved following the popular protests that erupted in April 2018.

Among the illegal NGOs is the Victoria-Compancera Cervecera Foundation of Nicaragua, which requested its voluntary dissolution, due to the lack of members to consolidate its board of directors and the fact that they do not receive donations to continue their projects.

The Victoria Foundation was authorized by the State to offer middle-level technical careers and a comprehensive training programme that promoted the development of technical and behavioral skills, which cause its graduates to quickly join the world of work at the end of their careers, according to their website.

Its operations and a “wide scholarship program for low-income young people” were financed by the Nicaraguan Brewery Company, according to the information.

The Foundation was also authorized to offer qualification courses for partners in the productive sector.

The organizations Bremen Overseas Research and Development Asociation, Asociación Ministerio Pentecost Ensancing the Kingdom of Jesus Christ, Association Centro de Atención Integral Edipcia and Manuela, and Asociación de Ganaderos de Cárdenas also requested the voluntary dissolution.

On the liquidation of the assets of the agencies, the Ministry of the Interior explained that it will be up to the Office of the Procurator-only to proceed ex officio in the transfer of movable or immovable property in the name of the State of Nicaragua, except to those who requested voluntary dissolution.

Some Sandinista deputies, such as Filiberto Rodriguez, have said that the affected NGOs used resources from the donations they received to try to overthrow President Daniel Ortega in the demonstrations that erupted in April 2018.

Thousands of Nicaraguans took to the streets at the time to protest controversial social security reforms, which then became Ortega’s demand for resignation after responding with force.

The protests left at least 355 dead, according to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), although Nicaraguan bodies raise the figure to 684 and the Ortega government recognizes “more than 300.”

The Sandinistas have also argued that the illegalization of these NGOs is part of a process of ordering, because not all the 7,227 that were registered in Nicaragua until 2018 were operating.

Nicaragua has been going through a political and social crisis since then, which has been accentuated after the controversial general elections of November 7, 2021, in which Ortega was re-elected for a fifth term, fourth in a row and second with his wife, Rosario Murillo, as vice president, with his main contenders in prison or exile.

This article has been translated from the original which first appeared on El Salvador