Nicaragua Shutters 5 NGOs, Dissolves 10 More

Photo of author

By Marco Echevarria

The Nicaraguan government, has revoked the legal status of five non-governmental organizations (NGOs), predominantly linked to evangelical churches, alongside an NGO dedicated to agricultural development. This decision also includes the confiscation of their assets. In addition, the Ministry of the Interior has approved the “voluntary” dissolution of ten more NGOs, one of which is the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, a Catholic order established in Nicaragua since 1999. These actions were officially documented in the country’s Official Gazette.

The Ministry cited the reason for canceling the five organizations as a failure to submit their financial statements for periods ranging from one to twelve years. The affected organizations include:

  • The Foundation for Technological Development in Agriculture and Forestry
  • The Evangelistic Ministry Healing, Liberation, Power, and Glory Isaiah 54:17
  • The Restoration Ministry Freeing the Captives
  • The Christian Church Mount Zion in Nicaragua
  • The Evangelistic Ministry Power of God Pentecost

As per the resolution, signed by Minister María Amelia Coronel Kinloch, their assets will be transferred to the state, in accordance with Law 1115, which governs associations.

Among the ten NGOs opting for voluntary dissolution is Casa Alianza, known for its work with at-risk children. This crackdown on NGOs follows the intensification of laws governing such organizations in the aftermath of the 2018 protests. These protests, marked by street blockades and clashes, resulted in over 300 deaths, as reported by the UN.

Since 2018, nearly 3,500 organizations have been shut down in Nicaragua, including several linked to the Catholic Church. Notable closures include the order of the Friars Minor Franciscans in October and the Society of Jesus in August. The latter faced accusations of “terrorism” leading to the confiscation of the Jesuit university of Managua and an adjacent residence for priests. These actions reflect the government’s ongoing strict stance towards NGOs and religious institutions in the country.