Moldova: New Governance plan includes only one objective for civil society

On December 11, 2019 the new government, led by Mr. Ion Chicu since November, approved the Governance plan for 2020-2023. Only one of the 263 objectives included in the plan refers to civil society organizations, namely: Strengthening the watch-dog role of civil society organizations and not allowing them to be involved in political activities.

The single objective includes three actions:

1. Involvement of civil society in all the processes of elaboration and promotion of public policies and the establishment of a constant communication platform;

2. Establishing the sectoral mechanisms for civil society involvement in the process of elaborating and monitoring the implementation of public policies and ensuring transparency in the decision-making process;

3. Approval of the framework regulation on the mechanism of direct financing of CSO projects from the public budget.

The process of consulting the governance plan was very short: 3 days on the national consultation platform between December 9-11.

The plan fully ignores some priority issues, such as the law on non-commercial organizations or the legal framework on philanthropy. Furthermore, the wording of the objective contains the phrase “not allowing CSOs to be involved in political activities“. The meaning and the purpose of the phrase given by the government remains unclear, especially as none of the actions envisaged relate to this topic. Previously, the same phrase was used by political leaders with the intention of limiting CSO involvement in the elaboration, consultation or monitoring of public policies.