BudgIT secures $3 million grant from Omidyar Network


Omidyar Network announced today it is renewing and expanding its investment in the Lagos-based government transparency organization BudgIT. The new up to $1.5 million, three-year grant follows an initial grant from the Omidyar Network in 2014, and will be focused on enabling BudgIT to grow its organizational capacity, especially at state level, and to expand its work with government and institutional stakeholders into Abuja.

Since its inception in 2011, BudgIT has established itself as a premier government transparency organization in Nigeria through its work to make the budget more accessible to ordinary citizens, and to empower citizens to track public projects. Using a mix of both online and offline strategies, BudgIT has helped more than one million Nigerian citizens understand how their federal and state budgets are spent and what role they can play in ensuring this money is allocated correctly.

BudgIT has also played an instrumental role in the Nigerian government joining the Open Government Partnership (OGP) working through the Open Alliance.

Ory Okolloh, director, Investments, Omidyar Network comments, “BudgIT stands out as a great example of an organization that is deeply committed to ensuring that citizens have the information they need to hold their government accountable. Oluseun and his team stand out as individuals who are working tirelessly to ensure that the government works for citizens rather than the other way around.  We are delighted to support them on their next phase of growth and impact.”

Central to BudgIT’s success, and subsequent growth, is its unique ability to connect citizens with information about budgets and public projects that affect them, and to work with all levels of government to improve their ability to transparently serve their constituents. In addition, BudgIT plays an important role in supporting civil society organizations, media, and multi-sector initiatives like the Open Government Partnership as they advance their governance agenda.

“This investment in BudgIT by Omidyar Network is highly welcome as we work to scale access to information across all levels of education and socio-economic class on matters related to use of public funds. Systemic changes through the Open Government Partnership mechanism are also crucial to our work. We are glad Omidyar Network and other partners see this opportunity at this phase of our organization,” says Oluseun Onigbinde, Co-Founder, BudgIT.

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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