Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia | Asia Samachar | 2 June 2015
A special funding for Indian-based non-government organisations (NGOs), which will include Sikh-based outfits, is expected to be finalised ‘very soon’.
Once approved by Prime Minister Mohd Najib Razak, the NGOs will be provided information on the method of application and other relevant details of the Federal government funding.
“The details will be out very soon. We are awaiting for the endorsement of the Prime Minister,” Social-Economic Development of Indian Community (SEDIC) director Prof Dr NS Rajendran tells Asia Samachar.
SEDIC is a special unit formed under the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) to handle the special funding for Indian NGOs, a task previously handled by the Economic Planning Unit (EPU), also under the PMO.
In the past, Sikh organisations like the Malaysian Gurdwaras Council (MGC), Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia (SNSM). Coalition of Malaysian Sikh Organisations (CMSO) and Khalsa Diwan Malaysia (KDM) have received direct funding from the Government.
However, it is understood that none of the Sikh organisations received any funding from the Federal Government last year.
The special funding, with an amount yet to be announced, comes as the Government prepares to roll out the Eleventh Malaysia Plan (2016-2020) which was unveiled in Parliament on May 21.
Rajendan was one of the speakers at a symposium in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday entitled ‘Reviewing the Eleventh Malaysia Plan (2016-2020: Tapping the Opportunities & Plugging Into the Provisions’. It was organised by Institute of Ethnic Studies (KITA) and Yayasan Pemulihan Sosial (YPS). [See story here].
One of the sessions at the April symposium were moderated by Associate Prof Dr Sarjit Singh from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM)’s Faculty of Ecology.
In the symposium, Rajendran said the process for 2015 special funding will be transparent, done with integrity and done efficiently.
“A new mechanism has been developed for the funding process, which will be announced to the public through the media, both print and social media. Information on the requirements for the proposals will also be disseminated.
“Once a particular NGO has received funding, we will put in place comprehensive monitoring. While the Government has an important role to play, the role of the civil society shouldn’t be underestimated. With or without GOvernment funding, societies have role to play. We must build the capacity of people in NGOs, to increase their effectiveness,” he said.
His remarks were captured in a document capturing the deliberations edited by Dr Denison Jayasooria, a principal research fellow at KITA, an institute under Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM).
SEDIC was formed with the objective of managing the special funding provided by the PM for the Indian community, ensuring that it is handled efficiently, with integrity and that it reaches the target group i.e. those with the lowest income in the Indian community (bottom 40%).
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