Minister for Trade and Development, Joe Costello, TD, today commended Non-Governmental Organisations involved in overseas development for their commitment to delivering effective programmes to assist communities in the developing world.
Minister Costello was speaking at the Dóchas Annual Conference in Dublin which focused on the importance of charity regulation, transparency, and accountability for NGOs engaged in international development.
Minister Costello said:
“Ireland’s overseas aid programme has been recognised time after time, by independent international observers, as one of the most effective and focussed in the world. The development NGO sector has a key role to play in this.
“The recent controversies regarding use of charitable funds in Ireland have eroded public trust in the charity sector. NGOs and all publically-funded organisations are now under increased scrutiny and must demonstrate more than ever that they are effective, accountable and achieving value for money.
“I am confident that the challenge in terms of greater accountability is one for which Irish Aid’s NGO partners are well prepared. Working in partnership with Irish Aid, considerable effort has already been undertaken by development NGOs in recent years to ensure full accountability for the use of public funds.
Minister Costello indicated that Irish Development NGOs had taken the lead in setting standards that may be adopted by the new charity regulator:
“As the new charity regulator works to set standards for the sector overall, I urge Irish development NGOs to continue to lead by example in this regard.”