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On Nigeria

Our Goal

Reducing corruption by supporting Nigerian-led efforts that strengthen accountability, transparency, and participation.

Why We Support This Work

A thriving Nigeria—with its rich natural resources, young and growing population, and continental leadership—is one of the most important goals for the world today. Yet corruption, impunity, and lack of accountability have far-reaching impacts on access to and quality of public services, the well-being of Nigerians, and overall development. Nigeria also boasts a diverse and vibrant civil society, growing independent media sector, and strengthened criminal justice system. In recent years, the Federal Government has also introduced a number of reforms designed to reduce corruption. The problem of corruption, paired with opportunities created by civil society, the media, government, and criminal justice sector reform set the stage for the On Nigeria Big Bet. In collaboration with stakeholders from civil society, donor partners, government, and academia, we developed a strategy to reduce corruption and improve quality of life for Nigerians.

Our Approach

Through targeted support, we aim to bolster the momentum around Nigerian-led efforts to strengthen accountability and reduce corruption. Our multifaceted strategy has four complementary areas of focus:

  • Enabling independent Nigerian media and journalism outlets to investigate and expose corruption and share anti-corruption success stories;
  • Strengthening the criminal justice system through nationwide adoption and implementation of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act and complementary laws and policies;
  • Supporting Nigerian civil society organizations, communities, and influencers to use media reports to call for action, mobilize to demand accountability, and advocate for policy changes that make it easier to prevent, detect, and punish corruption.
  • Promoting norm and behavior change by supporting faith leaders and their followers from across religious traditions to interrogate integrity within their respective religions and  performers, creators, and influencers from across Nigeria to produce and share compelling content about corruption and the cost of corruption to Nigerian communities.

Expected Outcomes

We anticipate that this work will lead to the following changes across Nigeria:

  • Decreased tolerance for corruption;
  • Institutionalization of systems for transparency and accountability across public and private sectors; and
  • Increased adoption and implementation of criminal justice laws and policies.

Several anticipated changes will indicate progress toward these outcomes. They include:

  • Increased quantity and quality of data-driven investigative reporting to expose corruption, monitor anti-corruption promises made by policymakers, amplify anti-corruption wins, and—ultimately—motivate policymakers, civil society, and individuals alike to join the fight against corruption; and
  • Increased capacity of states to adopt the Administration of Criminal Justice Act and of oversight committees that monitor implementation of and compliance with the Act.

Funding Priorities

The media and journalism component of our work seeks to strengthen investigative and data-driven journalism in Nigeria and to reinforce the role played by independent media and individuals in revealing and documenting corruption. This approach is an important part of reaching and galvanizing people and communities across the country in the fight against corruption and generating widespread demand for transparency and accountability.
We aim to strengthen the criminal justice system in ways that will help combat corruption at all levels, from day-to-day exchanges to acts of grand corruption. This work aims to improve government effectiveness by supporting civil society organizations that strengthen the legal environment through the implementation of the 2015 Administration of Criminal Justice Act nationally and in select states. As the law is more widely and consistently implemented, it will become easier to prosecute those who commit corruption.
Advocacy, accountability, and community participation efforts by Nigerians civil society organizations from across the country drive needed policy change to reduce corruption and create opportunities for communities members to demand change from their local, state, and federal government.
We support an array of Nigerian entertainment organizations to explore corruption-related topics in their radio, television, and online programming. We also support efforts by religious leaders and interfaith organizations to serve as anti-corruption champions and to encourage dialogue at the intersection of corruption, accountability, and religion in Nigerian society.

We are not accepting unsolicited proposals at this time. However, contact us to share new ideas and perspectives. 


Measurement & Evaluation for Learning

Rigorous, consistent, and agile evaluation of our work is a critical tool for informing our decision making, leading to better results and more effective stewardship of resources. We develop customized evaluation designs for each of our programs based on the problem, opportunity, and approach to the work, as well as our priorities around outcomes, impact, and learning.

We have engaged an evaluation and learning partner to measure and evaluate the progress of our strategy, test the assumptions underpinning it, and collect information about the context in which our strategy operates. The focus of these activities is on learning. We aim to understand the extent to which our strategy is contributing to an increase in accountability and transparency in Nigeria.

Findings and analyses from our evaluation activities will be published as they become available.

In addition, we have hired a technical assistance partner to help grantees identify and collect information so that they are able to more confidently and accurately tell the story of their work.


Updated June 2020

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