Civic Hive, BudgIT’s civic innovation hub, committed to raising civic tech leaders for transforming governance, social issues and creating intersections for civic engagements through technology has requested that state governments publish details of how COVID-19 funds received from both local and international donors are being spent. This request is expedient for proper monitoring of these funds, and also to ascertain if states are truly spending these funds on not only measures that effectively combat the pandemic but also on citizens’ welfare.
Through our COVID TRACKA platform, we have been able to publish donations received by both the federal and state governments since the heralding of this devastating pandemic and its effects on the frail health systems of our states. So far, both the federal government and the 36 states have received over 213 billion naira as COVID19 palliatives in cash and in kind, but there has not been a commensurate evidence or proof of how these funds are being spent.
‘’To properly measure the effectiveness of the funds received by the state governments on COVID19 response, states need to be totally transparent and accountable to its citizens by publishing detailed information of how these funds are being spent. Civic Hive will be at the core of driving this objective’’ says Gabriel Okeowo, BudgIT’s Principal Lead.
Through our efforts and advocacy, eight states – Ogun, Katsina, Lagos, Ebonyi, Oyo, Ondo, Kaduna and Ekiti – have published on their websites, financial statements on the amount raised and spent so far. These have been published on our COVIDTRACKA platform. We have also made it our responsibility to write formally to states that have not been open about COVID funds, asking them to imbibe the culture of transparency by publishing details of amounts received and spent on COVID19 responses.
We want to enjoin the other 28 states to imitate these 8 states by making available details about the resources and funds received and the amount spent so far on the COVID19 response. This will enlighten citizens on how much effort has been put in place by state governments in the battle against this pandemic and also reinforce their’ trust in the government. We also encourage members of the public and other CSOs to collaborate, support and join us in demanding accountability from both the federal and state governments.
Communications Associate, BudgIT.