The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation has announced nearly $6.5 million in funding to advance anti-corruption efforts in Nigeria.
The grants are part of the Foundation’s On Nigeria grantmaking, which seeks to reduce corruption by building an atmosphere of accountability, transparency, and good governance in the country, according to a release issued by the organization.
The grants support nonprofits working to inform and empower communities in the fight against corruption and to promote anti-corruption as a national priority in advance of the 2019 Presidential and Assembly elections.
They include support for efforts to strengthen systems and study what works to reduce corruption. These awards, according to the release, build on decades of the foundation:s support for projects to enhance credibility, integrity, monitoring, and security around past elections.
*They continue MacArthur’s recent support for organisations working to capitalise on the national momentum and increased political will to tackle corruption, with projects ranging from monitoring and transparency measures around the political process to public education about the costs of corruption,* the statement added.
Speaking on the grants, Director of MacArthur’s Nigeria Office, Dr. Kole Shettima, said “The country has begun an important process of addressing the corruption that plagues it on so many levels.”
“It is more important now than ever to keep anti-corruption work front and centre on the national agenda, and to empower people and communities with the information and platforms they need to advocate for themselves and fight for the issues that impact their daily lives.”
The foundation’s grants were made to several organisations, including: Accountability Research Center (Washington, D.C.), which is expected to partner the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) in Nigeria to assess the success of approaches and strategies to strengthen accountability around the world and in Nigeria.
Also, the Centre for Information Technology & Development (Kano) is to support efforts by civil society organisations to provide platforms and forums for social discourse around accountability and anti-corruption in advance of the 2019 elections.
Chatham House (London) is to research the efficacy of behavioural change strategies to reduce corruption and promote accountability in Nigeria.
The Legal Defense and Assistance Project (Lagos), headed by Mr. Chino Obiagwu, is to support efforts by six states to fully implement 15 core elements of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act that improve criminal investigation and prosecution efforts in corruption cases.
Another grantee, Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (Abuja) is to support efforts by civil society organisations to galvanise public and political debates on accountability and to keep anti-corruption as an important national issue in advance of the 2019 elections.
The Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Foundation (Abuja) is to support regional organisations to galvanise public and political debates on accountability and highlight anti-corruption as a broad national issue in advance of the 2019 National election.
Meanwhile, the Women’s Rights Advancement & Protection Alternative (Abuja) is to mobilise and support women and women’s groups to document the cost of corruption on women, speak out against corruption, and promote anti-corruption and accountability as priority issues through traditional and social media in advance of the 2019 elections.
MacArthur’s On Nigeria grantmaking supports Nigerian-led efforts to address the corruption, impunity, and lack of accountability that have posed major governance challenges in Nigeria, with far-reaching impacts on the well-being of Nigerians and development in the country.
The Foundation is focused on reducing incidences of petty corruption that citizens experience every day, addressing issues of grand corruption that siphon needed resources from the public sector, strengthening the criminal justice system, and building citizen demand for and confidence in anti-corruption efforts through support for independent media, journalism, and entertainment organisations.
MacArthur has been making grants in Nigeria since 1989, opening an office in Abuja in 1994 staffed by Nigerians.
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation supports creative people, effective institutions, and influential networks in building a more just, verdant, and peaceful world.
MacArthur is placing a few big bets that truly significant progress is possible on some of the world’s most pressing social challenges, including over-incarceration, global climate change, nuclear risk, and significantly increasing financial capital for the social sector.
In addition to the MacArthur Fellows Program, the Foundation continues its historic commitments to the role of journalism in a responsible and responsive democracy, as well as the strength and vitality of its headquarters city, Chicago, USA.