In 2007, Nigeria passed an important milestone: one elected government passed power to another for the first time in the nation’s history. Though imperfect, the poll demonstrated powerfully that Nigeria’s representative democracy was not a transient phase between periods of military repression but a growing reality.
For 20 years, the MacArthur Foundation has given grants in Nigeria, in the belief that Africa’s most populous nation was going through a transition of significance for the whole of sub-Saharan Africa. MacArthur has invested $100 million and supported almost 500 individuals and organizations committed to the vision of a Nigeria that is free and fair, and offers opportunity to all its citizens. We are encouraged by the progress we have witnessed and the people we have worked with to build a better future.
MacArthur’s efforts concentrate in three areas:
Not connected to any government or wedded to any ideology, the MacArthur Foundation is dedicated to basic human rights. We strive to further the free expression of ideas, reasoned debate and discourse, and evidence-based research and policy. In all we do, we seek to empower creative and idealistic people whose talents serve the common good.
Our office in Abuja has a staff of Nigerians who know and love their country. We have been privileged to support universities educating a new generation of leaders, groups that co-operate with police and government officials to make the justice system more effective and accountable, and health workers who save lives and share life-saving information. And we are helping to build a robust network of non-governmental organizations that works with the private sector and government to strengthen local communities and move Nigeria forward.
In a decade as president of MacArthur, I have visited Nigeria ten times. At each visit my respect for the nation, and my affection for its people, have grown. Though faced by great challenges, Nigerians are resolutely optimistic, energetic, and hopeful. It is a spirit MacArthur shares, and hopes to foster in practical ways.
I am pleased to present this report, which describes our grantmaking and lists the organizations we support. We welcome your comments and suggestions, and hope to encourage a continuing dialogue with all those who share our commitment to Nigeria, in the country and beyond. We may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Further information is at www.nigeria.macfound.org, where you may also register to receive our free monthly electronic newsletter.
We look forward to hearing from you.
Jonathan F. Fanton
Since the restoration of democracy in Nigeria in 1999, the nation’s universities have been experiencing a renaissance after years of neglect due to military rule, civil war, and financial crises. States are establishing new universities to meet the bustling demand for higher education, and existing universities are improving and expanding their facilities, infrastructure, research capabilities, and academic programs to address public needs. In addition, investments in faculty training and development are elevating the quality of education at the nation’s universities.
MacArthur’s support of higher education in Nigeria is based on the belief that robust universities and intellectual freedom are essential to developing and sustaining healthy, economically vibrant, democratic societies. An investment in universities is an investment in the social capital of the country. MacArthur has committed $40 million to Nigerian universities. Grantmaking is directed to areas of highest priority, as identified in conversations with the universities.
MacArthur supports projects to:
MacArthur’s involvement in higher education in Nigeria began with a series of planning grants in 2000 to four of the country’s leading universities: the University of Ibadan, Bayero University, Ahmadu Bello University, and the University of Port Harcourt. These universities were selected for their quality of leadership, innovation, and national significance. Since its initial commitment, MacArthur has continued to support the development of initiatives at these universities with the belief that they will also serve as models for other universities in Nigeria and Africa as a whole.
To achieve the greatest impact from its investments in Nigerian higher education, MacArthur joined with other international foundations to form the Partnership for Higher Education in Africa in 2000. The Partnership, which now includes the Carnegie Corporation and the Ford, Rockefeller, Mellon, Kresge, and Hewlett Foundations, has contributed over $352 million for higher education to 56 African universities in nine African countries. The majority of MacArthur funding went to Nigerian universities. In 2005, the Partnership pledged an additional $200 million over the next five years to higher education initiatives in Africa. A prime example of the Partnership’s ability to pool resources and encourage innovation and transformation on a large scale is its success in greatly increasing the speed of Internet connectivity at Nigerian universities. In addition, the Partnership is helping identify and develop the next generation of African academics to ensure the long-term growth and improvement of higher education in Africa.
For more information on the Partnership, visit www.foundation-partnership.org.
From helping construct a fiber-optic network at Ahmadu Bello University to providing science equipment at the University of Ibadan, MacArthur’s support for higher education in Nigeria has focused on building the scientific research capacity of the nation’s universities. Strengthening this capacity is central to improving the quality of higher education in Nigeria.
Foundation support has focused on Ahmadu Bello University, Bayero University, University of Ibadan, and the University of Port Harcourt, which collectively and individually reflect the tremendous progress in the nation’s higher education system after years of decline. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, government funding for Nigerian universities plummeted as a result of a series of crises. Infrastructure, libraries, and teaching and research suffered. At some universities, graduation rates dropped significantly.
Today, a different picture is emerging. With approximately $6 million in grants from the Foundation since 2000, Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria has been able to develop a robust fiber- optics network on campus, an email system, digitization and automation of library services, and increased access to the Internet and computer technology for students and faculty. The university, which is Nigeria’s largest higher education institution, has been able to purchase new science books and journals for the use of staff, students, and researchers in the nine departmental libraries in the Faculty of Sciences for the first time since 1980.
At Bayero University, which has the highest-percentage of accredited programs of any university in Nigeria, MacArthur has provided more than $8.7 million in grants since 2000. These funds enabled the university in agrarian Kano State to establish and equip the Faculty of Agriculture. Currently, MacArthur grants are helping the university set up new departments of nursing and dentistry and strengthen the staff development program, allowing faculty in critical fields including science, medicine, and agriculture to obtain doctoral degrees. The dentistry program will help address the national shortage of dental surgeons, while the nursing program will assist in meeting recent government standards that require all nurses to have bachelor’s degrees.
At the University of Ibadan, Nigeria’s oldest university, MacArthur has provided more than $11 million in grants since 2000. As the demand for post-secondary education grows in Nigeria, the grants will help expand access to higher education by increasing enrollment in the university’s accredited distance learning program. The goal is to more than triple enrollment from 7000 to 25,000 students by 2010. In addition, MacArthur support will help the university equip its Central Research Laboratory, continue efforts to improve staff training, and increase research collaboration with other universities around the world. To strengthen research and learning, the university will also invest in information technology infrastructure and advance library automation.
The University of Port Harcourt serves as a model for fundraising and development for other universities in Nigeria. Since 2000, Port Harcourt has received $4.7 million in grants from MacArthur, much of which has helped develop the university’s fundraising capacity through the establishment of the University Advancement Centre. The Foundation’s support has also helped make possible private partnerships. The Centre’s projects include raising funds to improve the campus water supply and electricity and to construct a 1500-seat auditorium. In addition, through the efforts of Friends of Port Harcourt,a voluntary advisory group, the university was awarded a $1 million donation from Shell Petroleum Development Company to build the Information and Communication Technology Center. The university also has received a $10 million commitment over five years from TotalFinaElf to establish the new School of Petroleum Studies.
The Foundation also helps strengthen Nigerian higher education by working with national organizations, such as the Federal Ministry of Education, the National Commission for Colleges of Education, the Committee of Vice Chancellors, the ICT Forum of Partnership Institutions, and the National Universities Commission. Through this support, MacArthur seeks to spread the benefits of its higher-education initiatives to other institutions. For example, the ICT Forum, a group of 100 research and education institutions in Nigeria, builds capacity in information, communications, and technology for teaching, learning, and community service. The group succeeded in lowering the price of bandwidth for its members from an average of $9 to $2.33 per kbps per month because of the economy of scale.
As a result of various initiatives at universities and other institutions, Nigerian higher education is poised for significant advancements in the quality of technology and research.
For more information, visit the following websites:
Ahmadu Bello University — www.abu.edu.ng
Bayero University — www.buk.edu.ng
University of Ibadan — www.ui.edu.ng
University of Port Harcourt — www.uniport.edu.ng
Nigeria has one of the highest rates of maternal mortality and morbidity in the world. An estimated 59,000 women die each year due to complications from pregnancy or childbirth. Their youth contributes to the high rate of maternal deaths. More than four out of 10 Nigerian girls become mothers before the age of 20, and 21 percent of teenage girls have children.
The country’s young population — more than 20 percent of Nigerians are between the ages of 10 and 19 — has contributed to major sexual and reproductive health challenges from early pregnancy to exposure to sexually transmitted diseases.
MacArthur has awarded $34 million in grants to address these issues in Nigeria. The Foundation supports nationwide work, but focuses its initiatives in six states — Borno, Cross River, Enugu, Lagos, Kano and Plateau — where there is a tremendous need for reproductive health information and services. Nigerian partners in these states are working to teach secondary school students about early pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases and to increase community awareness and availability of health services for women.
Grantmaking in Nigeria takes a comprehensive approach, reflecting the belief that women’s well-being is central to effective population policy and that individuals should be free to determine and plan the size of their families. People will make wise choices with information and access to adequate health care, and with women treated as equal partners with men in making sexual and reproductive decisions. This approach reflects the recommendations adopted by 189 countries at the landmark International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo in 1994 and the consensus reached in 2000 by United Nations members on the Millennium Development Goal aimed at reducing maternal mortality.
Nigeria and India are part of a $10.7 million project by to stabilize a hemorrhaging woman while she is transported to a medical facility.
MacArthur grantees are central to improving the well-being of women and their families in Nigeria. Healthy Mothers Healthy Nation is working in rural villages in Yobe State to reduce preventable pregnancy-related deaths because of barriers such as low literacy levels, lack of knowledge about family planning, and access to proper obstetric care. And grantees such as the Youth Adolescent Reflection and Action Center, which operates in Plateau State, are helping the government implement a national sexuality education curriculum in public secondary schools across the nation.
Specifically, grantmaking in the area of population and reproductive health in Nigeria supports efforts to:
Seeking to reduce maternal mortality and morbidity, MacArthur-supported projects:
In a nation where almost half of the teenagers are sexually active, Action Health Incorporated has played a leading role in “breaking the culture of silence” around young people’s sexuality in Nigeria.
“We moved our country from a point of denial and apathy about the poor status of young people’s sexual health indices to a context where universal access to sexuality education for young people is now a national education policy,” says Nike Esiet, Executive Director of Action Health Incorporated.
Since its establishment in 1989, the Lagos-based organization has achieved impressive victories in efforts to increase and enhance sexuality and reproductive health education for youth. It played a major role in the adoption of a national policy mandating universal access to sexuality education for young people in the school system. And it is a key participant in the country’s quest to establish and implement the federal government’s Family Life and HIV/AIDS Education curriculum. Action Health is helping launch that curriculum in more than 300 schools in Lagos State and is working on a pilot program to teach the curriculum nationwide.
The organization uses a multidimensional approach to improve the health of Nigerian adolescents, including:
Action Health has helped the government expand the Family Life Education curriculum to more than half of Nigeria’s 36 states. Inadequate resource materials for students and teachers and a limited partnership among key government agencies hindered further progress on the initiative. With a $430,000 grant from the MacArthur Foundation, Action Health is addressing this challenge. The grant is supporting the development of a pilot course to institutionalize the curriculum for every teacher in Nigeria. The two-semester course for teacher-training colleges is being developed in collaboration with the National Commission for Colleges of Education, the government body that accredits teacher-training programs. The course will train both existing teachers and those preparing to enter the field.
Action Health’s reach extends across the continent of Africa. The organization hosts and facilitates the Africa Regional Sexuality Resource Centre, which seeks to nurture and build professional capacity in the emerging field of sexuality in Egypt, Kenya, South Africa, and Nigeria — four of Africa’s most populous nations. The organization also hosts the secretariat for the African Federation for Sexual Health and Rights.
In recognition of the impact of its work, Action Health received the 2007 MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions, which honors small but promising and highly effective organizations around the world.
For more information visit www.actionhealthinc.org.
Civil society organizations have played a critical role in helping build a human rights infrastructure in Nigeria by advancing programs that hold the government accountable to the constitution and international agreements and that seek to insert human rights standards into policymaking. Since 1978, MacArthur has contributed $15 million to human rights organizations in Nigeria that monitor and support government initiatives, and defend and promote human rights.
The Foundation’s human rights grantmaking seeks to expand and strengthen these organizations nationally as well as locally in the states of Kano, Lagos, Plateau, and Rivers, where advocates are pressing state governments to establish programs that deepen human rights protections. For example, in Lagos, the Legal Defence and Assistance Project is working to improve the nation’s criminal justice system by providing legal representation to the indigent. The organization has enlisted 750 lawyers who assist more than 6000 people pro bono each year. It is also establishing a human rights center in Abuja to teach the public about rule of law. In 2008, the Project was the recipient of the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions, which honors small but promising organizations around the world.
MacArthur grantee the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project litigates high-impact cases involving violations of human rights treaties that the Nigerian government has signed and incorporated into law, such as the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights. The group has filed a number of cases with the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, based in Banjul, Gambia and part of the regional human rights system in Africa. Issues range from discrimination against children with HIV/AIDS to public corruption.
The Foundation believes that respect for human rights is fundamental to human security and well-being; that both international and local human rights promotion is necessary for building a universal movement; and that an accessible system of international justice is essential for protecting human rights around the globe.
MacArthur supports programs in Nigeria that:
For more than a decade, the CLEEN Foundation has worked to transform the culture of policing in Nigeria, which had grown corrupt and abusive under years of military dictatorship. The organization has succeeded in reforming the police force and helping build public confidence in this vital institution by setting standards for police accountability. MacArthur has provided almost $2 million in grants to support the organization’s efforts, which range from monitoring police misconduct to promoting public oversight of law enforcement.
CLEEN’s approach of working within the system rather than agitating from the outside has won it support from police and the ear of government officials. Beginning in 2002, the organization mobilized Nigeria’s national police leadership to revive the Police Public Complaint Bureaus. Based at the nation’s 36 police command centers, the bureaus help monitor police conduct and have made it easier for the public to protest incidences of police abuse. Since 2002, more than 5000 police officers have been dismissed for misconduct following public complaints and hundreds have been demoted. The increase in the number of complaints against police and punishment for misconduct has served as an important deterrent and helped improve police conduct.
“We have moved the community relationship with the police from the military era, where it was characterized by hostility and violence, to one of collaboration and partnership in crime prevention across Nigeria,” said Innocent Chukwuma, Executive Director of CLEEN.
As a result of the organization’s work, the Nigerian Police Force adopted community policy as a strategy in 2004. Chukwuma said the strategy requires officers to work with residents to find solutions to common problems and crimes that plague neighborhoods.
As a member of Altus, an international network of criminal justice reform organizations, CLEEN’s influence extends beyond Nigeria. Altus works to increase the capacity of non-governmental organizations to improve rights-based policing, bolster the administration of justice, and advance practical understanding of the reform of justice systems. In 2007, under the auspices of Altus, CLEEN was responsible for organizing police station visits by residents in Nigeria and five other African nations. Following the visits, the police stations were scored on issues including community orientation and physical and detention conditions.
Improving police accountability is one aspect of CLEEN’s efforts to strengthen rule of law and advance justice in Nigeria. But the organization, based in Lagos State, has also worked on strengthening the electoral process to help safeguard the successful transition from one civilian administration to the other. For example, CLEEN received a grant from the Foundation to measure public perceptions of electoral procedures in the April 2007 general election. CLEEN’s survey included more than 22,000 respondents from across the nation; the findings could help guide future election policies and procedures.
The organization’s breath of work on behalf of public safety, security and justice in Nigeria was among the reasons why, in 2006, CLEEN received the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. The Award honors small but promising and highly effective organizations around the world.
For more information visit www.cleen.org.
Ahmadu Bello University
Zaria, Kaduna State
$2,500,000 in support of information technology, library development and related university strengthening activities (over three years). (2007)
Kano, Kano State
$3,100,000 in support of staff development and the refurbishing and upgrading of University facilities (over three years). (2007)
$100,000 in support of improving teaching and learning facilities (over two years). (2008)
Council for Advancement and Support of Education
$197,000 to improve educational fundraising at the four universities supported by the Foundation in Nigeria (over two years). (2008)
Federal Ministry of Education
Garki, Jigawa State
$250,000 for surveying technology needs, conducting performance audits, and improving information technology infrastructure at universities. (2006)
$75,000 to use information and communication technology to improve education. (2008)
Institute for Policy and Economic Research
$150,000 in support of a planning grant to launch a new Institute for Economic and Policy Research. (2007)
International Development Research Centre
$370,000 in support of supplying discounted bandwidth to a consortium of universities in Africa (over three years). (2007)
International Foundation for Science
$3,500,000 to improve the science infrastructure base of universities in Nigeria and Madagascar (over two years). (2008)
Machina Emirate Development Association
Nguru, Yobe State
$30,000 in support of instructional technology and computing at Mai Bukar Memorial Science Boarding School. (2007)
Nigeria ICT Forum of Partnership Institutions
$400,000 in support of improving ICT in Partnership universities (over three years). (2007)
$350,000 to supply affordable and sustainable bandwidth to universities supported by the Partnership for Higher Education and other African research and education institutions. (2008)
Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Foundation
$50,000 for the strengthening of the Olusegun Obasanjo Research Library (over 18 months). (2008)
Society for Research Administrators International
$215,000 in support of strengthening Nigerian universities’ research capacity through building research linkages. (2006)
South African Institute for Distance Education
Johannesburg, South Africa
$600,000 to improve the use and development of educational technologies within universities supported by the Partnership for Higher Education in Africa (over four years). (2008)
University of Ibadan
Ibadan, Oyo State
$4,000,000 in support of strengthening the human capital, institutional facilities, and governance system of the University (over three years). (2007)
University of Illinois
$201,000 in support of improving user access to research and information materials at university libraries in Nigeria (over three years). (2008)
University of Port Harcourt
Port Harcourt, Rivers State
$2,500,000 in support of institutional strengthening (over three years). (2006)
$100,000 in support of fundraising from alumni (over two years). (2008)
Action Health, Incorporated
Yaba, Lagos State
$430,000 in support of Family Life HIV/AIDS Education and pre-service training of teachers in Nigeria (over three years). (2007)
ActionAid International Foundation Nigeria
$250,000 in support of activities towards promoting citizen participation in HIV/AIDS response and maternal mortality mitigation efforts through budget monitoring and advocacy (over two years). (2008)
BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights
Lagos, Lagos State
$400,000 to promote the reproductive health and rights of women whose lives are governed by Shari’a Law (over three years). (2007)
Kano, Kano State
$65,000 in support of institutional strengthening of Minjibir General Hospital. (2007)
Calabar International Institute for Research, Information and Documentation
Calabar, Cross River State
$100,000 to improve and update the quality and content of the Conscientizing Male Adolescents program (over two years). (2008)
Center for Communication and Reproductive Health Services
Bida, Niger State
$300,000 in support of implementation of the Niger State Sexuality Education/Family Life and HIV/AIDS Education (over three years). (2006)
Centre for Development and Population Activities
$400,000 in support of education and training on maternal mortality reduction (over three years). (2007)
$150,000 to promote best practices in maternal mortality reduction in Nigeria. (2008)
Community Health and Research Initiative
Kano, Kano State
$175,000 to work with 10 local governments and the Kano state government to reposition the commitment to address maternal mortality and morbidity through improved budgetary allocation and service delivery (over 32 months). (2008)
Community Life Project
Apapa, Lagos State
$150,000 to increase access to comprehensive reproductive and sexual health for out-of-school youth in Lagos State (over two years). (2007)
Federal Ministry of Health
$500,000 in support of promoting the use of magnesium sulfate (over two years). (2008)
Girls’ Power Initiative, Nigeria
Calabar, Cross River State
$300,000 in support of activities towards scaling up the implementation of the national sexuality education curriculum in Cross River State (over three years). (2007)
Global Health and Awareness Research Foundation
Enugu, Enugu State
$150,000 in support of implementation of Family Life and HIV/AIDS Education in Enugu State (over two years). (2007)
Management Strategies for Africa
Ilford, United Kingdom
$300,000 in support of improving the policy environment for the implementation of reproductive health programs in Nigeria (over two years). (2007)
$83,000 to increase awareness and provide research and data analysis for policy formulation and implementation in Nigeria. (2007)
National Commission on Colleges of Education
$50,000 in support of implementation of the Family Life and HIV/AIDS Education curriculum. (2007)
London, United Kingdom
$300,000 in support of developing and implementing computer and mobile phone based sexuality education for Nigerian adolescents (over two years). (2007)
$100,000 in support of institutional strengthening of facilities promoting safe motherhood. (2007)
Society of Gynecology and Obstetrics of Nigeria
Jos, Plateau State
$250,000 in support of reducing maternal mortality (over three years). (2007)
University of Ibadan Department of Sociology
Ibadan, Oyo State
$200,000 in support of building capacity for monitoring and evaluation of sexuality education programs (over three years). (2006)
Youth, Adolescent, Reflection & Action Center
Jos, Plateau State
$275,000 in support of Family Life and HIV/ AIDS Education in Plateau State (over three years). (2007)
Alliances for Africa
South-West Ikoyi, Lagos State
$200,000 in support of information, communication, and public advocacy on the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights in Arabic (over three years). (2007)
Palo Alto, CA
$59,000 to support the National Human Rights Commission of Nigeria to implement its Martus software to gather and utilize human rights information. (2008)
Centre for Human Rights in Islam
Kano, Kano State
$25,000 for promoting and protecting universal human rights from an Islamic perspective. (2008)
Centre for Socio-Legal Studies
$183,000 to document the status of justice sector reform, human rights, and juvenile justice in Nigeria. (2008)
Ojodu, Lagos State
$200,000 to conduct a national electoral survey as a complementary and reliable source of information to official statistics on elections in Nigeria. (2006)
$193,000 in support of a second national electoral survey as a complementary and reliable source of information to official statistics on elections in Nigeria. (2007)
$231,000 to conduct a post-election national survey to measure public perceptions of the electoral process in the April 2007 general elections. (2007)
$100,000 in support of activities to build the capacity of human rights organizations in Kano State to monitor, document, and report on human rights violations. (2007)
Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
Port Harcourt, Rivers State
$250,000 to support the use of a paralegal program to document incidences and seek redress for human rights violations by law enforcement officials in Rivers State (over three years). (2008)
Legal Defence and Assistance Project
Anthony Village, Lagos State
$450,000 to strengthen and reform the administration of criminal justice in six states in Nigeria (over three years). (2007)
Legal Research Initiative
$275,000 to incorporate and apply the provisions and practices contained in the United Nations Convention into the operations of law enforcement agencies in Nigeria (over three years). (2007)
National Human Rights Commission
$400,000 to build the capacity to implement the National Action Plan for the promotion and protection of human rights and to document and report on human rights violations in Nigeria (over three years). (2007)
$80,000 in support of hosting a meeting of the Network of National Human Rights Institutions of Africa and National Human Rights Institutions of West Africa. (2008)
Network of University Legal Aid Institutions
$250,000 to expand the scope of clinical legal education and complement official legal aid services in Nigeria (over two years). (2008)
Nigerian Bar Association
Lagos, Lagos State
$300,000 to train and sensitize Nigerian lawyers on the use of regional and sub-regional mechanisms for human rights protection and the review of the Fundamental Rights Enforcement Procedure Rules (over two years). (2007)
Socio-Economic Rights & Accountability Project
Lagos, Lagos State
$150,000 in support of activities to generate new strategies to document and litigate internationally recognized economic, social, and cultural rights before national and regional courts (over two years). (2008)
University of Ibadan Faculty of Law
Ibadan, Oyo State
$250,000 in support of strengthening the human rights and rule of law program. (2007)
West African Bar Association
Lagos, Lagos State
$250,000 to promote and protect human rights through the Economic Community of West African States Community Court of Justice (over two years). (2007)
Action Health, Incorporated
Yaba, Lagos State
$500,000 in support of expanded educational activities to increase the impact of sexual and reproductive health education in Nigeria and the region. (2007)
Legal Defence and Assistance Project
Anthony Village, Lagos State
$500,000 to establish and operate a Law and Human Rights Resource Centre in the Federal Capital Territory Abuja for the purposes of conducting research and training on the rule of law and justice administration. (2008)
Plot 432 Yakubu Pam Street
(Amma House), The Penthouse Opposite National Hospital
Central Business District
Phone: (234-9) 461-4878
Fax: (234-9) 461-4877
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
140 S. Dearborn Street
Chicago, IL 60603 USA
Phone: (312) 726-8000
Fax: (312) 920-6258