The Corporate Affairs Commission is taking Nigeria back to the STONE-AGE

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The Corporate Affairs Commission is taking Nigeria back to the STONE-AGE

The Corporate Affairs Commission is turning the Easing of doing Business Initiative of the Federal Government turn into a JOKE..

Or how do we explain a Commission that has moved towards using technology to ease the process of Business Registration now requiring anyone who wants to register a Foundation, NGO or Non-Profit Organization to apply for a Consent Code via sending their physical letters to the Registrar in Abuja?

 

In this time of a pandemic and at a time where the coronavirus can even spread further through surfaces including papers and documents?

Incase the Registrar and his band of STONE AGE thinkers ain’t aware, the Non-Profit Industry might not pay Company Income Tax or VAT but they pay personal income tax (PAYE) and contribute largely to the Nigerian Economy via those they impact with their projects and those they employ which happens to be in a large majority.

Nigeria has a buoyant and diverse Development Sector and Non-Profit Scene. The Corporate Affairs Commission might want to defend its action citing ‘National Security Concerns’ but there are better ways to do this particularly for an Institution that had gone Digital using technology to incorporate legal entities.

It is a shame that a Government Agency would implement this archaic policy at this time.

The CAC new policy states that to register a NGO, Church, Foundation or Non-Profit Organization, you would apply for a Consent Code directly from the Registrar in Abuja via paying N5,000 in the bank then write a hard copy letter sent to any CAC office nationwide but addressed to the Registrar in Abuja as he is the only one with the powers to approve such entities, as you can imagine, the average unofficial amount of N15,000-N25,000 is needed to get your approval fast-tracked for a Consent Code to be apportioned to you is bribing someone who knows their way around the CAC. This fast-tracked approval you bribe a CAC official proxy comes in 4 weeks time at the minimum.

A backward thinking policy has effectively opened a new Vista of EXTORTION, BRIBERY, SLEAZE AND CORRUPTION at the CAC.

Please who thinks like this?

How does the new policy ease the Presidential Initiative to ease doing business in Nigeria?

These are our thoughts and solutions at the Nigerian Global Affairs Council (NIGAC):

We know Government is desperate for revenue so they take any route to generate income via their Agencies, on that, no issues but at least don’t frustrate genuine people’s effort to get their Initiatives registered as it is also grant dependent as its major stream of income. Income that enables it pay salaries and close the development gap our Government has failed to provide.

Rather than ask people to submit a hard copy letter at their offices, why can’t the CAC adopt the same online docu-upload model it uses for those who register companies and PLCs on their platform. People get to pay online then upload their request letter for a Consent Code online thereby removing 3rd party deals and ensuring that corruption and bribery is effectively removed. This is how an organization that forward thinking acts.

If the Registrar cannot change this policy strategy then the Minister for Trade and Investment should force this change – this is a retrogressive policy and it will only hurt Nigeria badly.

The Federal Government’s Ease of Doing Business Initiative can be railroaded by this very Policy if left unchecked.

Thank you

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Kindly share your thoughts to policyposition@nigac.org

#PublicPolicy #PolicyInsights #PolicySimplification #NonProfits #NGOs #CAC #ConsentCode #Think-Tank

 

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*EldaDavid* is a Public Policy Practitioner who works and resides in Lagos, Nigeria. EldaDavid is the President-in-Council and Research Lead for the Nigerian Global Affairs Council – A Technology-based and Digital Media-driven Public Policy and Evidence-based Research Think-Tank that always simplifies Government Policy Positions.

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