Registration of NGOs in Zimbabwe

Section 21 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides for the freedom of assembly and association. Restrictions to this right may be imposed by laws enacted for the registration of companies, partnerships, societies or other associations of persons. 

This restriction provides the basis for, among others, laws that regulate the registration of NGOs. The Private Voluntary Organisations Act (Chapter 17:05) read together with the Code of Procedure for the Registration and Operations of Non-Governmental Organisations in Zimbabwe General Notice 99 of 2007 regulates the establishment, registration and operations of NGOs in Zimbabwe. 

Every NGO wishing to operate in Zimbabwe must be registered before carrying out its activities or seeking funding. Unlike local NGOs, international NGOs are required to first sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the government ministry relevant to the organisation’s work.
Registration of NGOs in Zimbabwe
To operate in Zimbabwe an NGO may register under one of the following forms:

1. Registration as a trust: A trust can be established for private benefit or for a charitable purpose. The trust deed will show whether a trust has been established for charitable purposes. A trust does not have separate legal personality, though it may enter into contracts in its own name if the trust deed so allows.

2. Registration as a company limited by guarantee: A company limited by guarantee must be registered with the Registrar of Companies in terms of section 21 of the Companies Act. A company limited by guarantee will have legal personality.

3. Universitas: Universitas is a product of the common law and are not regulated by statute. An universitas exists when there is an entity which has a constitution and members that agree to achieve a common objective out of activities that are entirely for the benefit of its members.

It is important for businesses intending to conduct business in specific areas to obtain licences or other permits. Employment and Residence Permits must be obtained before entering Zimbabwe unless one is a tourist.

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Registration of NGOs in Zimbabwe

Registration of NGOs in Zimbabwe

Registration of NGOs in Zimbabwe

Registration of NGOs in Zimbabwe

Disclaimer: The contents of this website are for general information purposes only. They do not constitute our legal or professional advice. Readers are advised not to act on the basis of the information contained herein alone. Every situation depends on its own facts and circumstances. We accept no responsibility for any loss or damage of whatsoever nature which may arise from reliance on any of the information published herein without consulting a professional legal practitioner.

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