BudgIT Celebrates Decade Of Civic Innovation, Social Impact In Nigeria.

BudgIT celebrates 10 years of civic-innovation and social impact in Nigeria  - Chronicle.ng

Yemisi Izuora

BudgIT Foundation, a foremost civic-tech organization leading the advocacy for fiscal transparency and accountability in Nigeria and three other African countries, has officially announced its 10th-anniversary celebration tagged “A decade of civic-innovation and social impact” scheduled to hold in September 2021.

To celebrate BudgIT’s achievements in the last decade,  BudgIT will host a series of signature events between September 13 and September 18 2021, including our Anniversary Lecture, Hackathon and Dinner & Awards ceremony.

Founded in 2011, BudgIT’s work within Nigeria’s civic-tech space has moved beyond simplifying the budget using an array of civic-tech tools, into facilitating budget reforms at both national and subnational levels, including budget access, improved sectoral financing, budget transparency and accountability and budget implementation. We have also led and co-led some of the biggest advocacy projects and initiatives in Nigeria including the Budget Padding, OpenNass, OccupyNigeria, State of States and Open Budget campaigns. BudgIT also recorded groundbreaking achievements, leading the CSO community that was instrumental to the Nigerian Government’s agreement to sign up for OGP in July 2016.

While speaking about the landmark celebration, Oluseun Onigbinde, BudgIT’s Lead Director and Co-founder shared some of BudgIT’s significant achievements in the last ten years and expectations for the next decade.

“The last ten years have been nothing short of tremendous for us at BudgIT. Despite the challenges, BudgIT has recorded significant achievements while facilitating improved fiscal transparency and accountability through social advocacy, civic innovation, institutional engagements, partnerships and active citizen mobilization. We have played a major role in defining the landscape of Nigeria’s civic-tech space and we are currently engraving our footprints within Africa’s civic-tech space” Oluseun added.

BudgIT has reached millions of citizens both digitally and offline on budget and public resource management related matters, thereby bringing arcane content to that of common knowledge and initiating them towards action. Likewise, we have supported the process of extractive audit transparency through strategic partnerships with organisations like Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) on improving its audit process and the release of NNPC’s monthly operational and financial reports under the current administration.

BudgIT’s success in facilitating budget access at the subnational level has been possible through its partnership with the World Bank, Kaduna State Government, British Council, European Union and other institutions. These partnerships have reinforced the call for transparency and accountability at the state level leading to the availability of state budgets as well as increasing access and publications to 34 budgets in the last five years. Hitherto, BudgIT has assisted Nigerian states in developing their citizens’ budgets, while replicating the capacity to develop strategies for effective budget advocacy at the subnational level in over 150 CSOs across the country.

Through BudgIT’s project tracking platform, Tracka, we have ensured effective service delivery  through project monitoring in 32 states. We have facilitated budget implementation and service delivery at the grassroots through continuous engagement and citizen mobilization.

“So far we have tracked over 16,738 projects worth billions of naira, ensured the completion of over 7000 constituency projects,  facilitated 15,467 town hall meetings through our 37 project tracking officers across Nigeria, with support from over 1500 community champions currently present in 32 states. This makes us really proud of how far we have come” Joseph Agunbiade, BudgIT’s Co-founder and CTO.

Beyond institution-led engagements, BudgIT’s achievements wouldn’t be possible without the constant support from donors and partners like Gates Foundation, Luminate, MacArthur Foundation, Ford Foundation, OSIWA, OXFAM, among others – who have consistently committed resources to BudgIT’s vision. We have immensely benefited from the support of great personalities like Oby Ezekwesili, Bosun Tijani, Tony Elumelu, Ory Okolloh and many others that we cannot mention. These partnerships and relationships are very critical in our next phase.

“The next ten years are very critical for us at BudgIT. We hope to scale our work across Africa and the Middle East. As a civic-tech powerhouse, we also aim to leverage emerging technologie to improve budget access and participatory governance, which is a very important aspect of what we do” Oluseun added.

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