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Home / Corruption / Connected Development, Budgit, others task citizens to hold Government accountable regarding COVID-19 fund disbursement

Connected Development, Budgit, others task citizens to hold Government accountable regarding COVID-19 fund disbursement

Bukola Afeni
The Chief Executive Officer of Connected Development, Hamzat Lawal, has called on all Nigerians to engage with the government  in the aspect of accountability of funds disbursed during COVID-19 pandemic.
He made the disclosure while speaking at a conference on COVID-19 transparency and accountability project, organized by CODE and Budgit.
According to Hamzat, a large number of citizen lived in abject poverty despite the large number of money that the government obtained from  development partners and the private sector.
” Now is the time for the citizens to engage with the govenrment, and take their future in their hand. We do not have to always take the back seat. All the money that was donated during that period, did the citizens feel the impact on the economy?”
The Chief Executive Officer of CODE, further reiterated that his organization has a vision to hold all the African  govenrment accountable.
” In April 2020, we had COVID-19 Follow the money. We launched a digital campaign, and aggregated data by leveraging on social media. The campaign had spread to 7 African countries.
It is our hope that from this moment, people will get critical feedback from the government”
Speaking at the event, the Director of Budgit, Oluseun Onigbinde, said there is need for all Nigerians to amplify their voice in ensuring accountability in the country.

He emphasized on the need for citizens to ensure that there is transparency in the way the funds disbursed during the COVID -19 pandemic were spent.

He added that COVID-19 Transparency and accountability project started as a conversation to track the money that was obtained during the pandemic.
“When COVID 19 pandemic happened, we knew that people were in hardship, and had emergency issues at hand. We decided to track the money in 7 countries. We hope to amplify our voices, and also extended our work to Siera Leone and Liberia.
We know that people will wait to use the opportunity for profiteering,  we had to put in place a structure for Pan African countries”.
Speaking at the event, Action Aid Country Director, Ene Obi, said the country had a large number of youth that were living in abject poverty during the COVID-19 pandemic.
” Despite the prevailing hardship during that  period, some of our leaders were stealing money during COVID 19 pandemic.
During the pandemic, the private sector were able to meet the need of the people by donating funds to support the less privileged in the society. The funds and food materials were not properly disbursed”.
In the same vein, she said some issues need to be addressed in order to ensure accountability in the country.
She further commended the media in demanding accountability from the government during the pandemic period.
“The  media should give adequate reportage and must be able to know how government perform during the time frame.
Corruption has been a cancer in the system, and we all need to fight the menance in the society”.
She also  commended the private sector for rising  up to support the citizens through several emergencies.

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