AMERICAN charity the Nigeria Diaspora Network (NDN) is planning to make a $10m grant available to encourage and support the emergence of credible and more productive candidates for the 2023 general elections.
Barely 24 hours after President Muhammadu Buhari called for help from the US government to end the hydra-headed security challenges facing Nigeria, the NDN said it had concluded plans to make the money available. Akintunde Ademola, the group’s publicity secretary, said it was poised to make tangible contributions to the lingering political leadership that has bogged down Nigeria after over the last six decades of independence from colonial rule.
Mr Ademola said: “Today, we announce the institution of a $10m grant to support our partner organisations and candidates who meet our rigorous selection criteria. The aim is to produce progressive leaders and groups dedicated to leading Nigeria on a good governance structure.
“Nigeria Diaspora Network wishes to re-confirm our commitment coupled with our unconditional continued efforts to support young intelligent candidates to run for elected government positions in the Federal Republic of Nigeria. We believe that to put good governance in place, honest, God-fearing and selfless leaders must be elected into public offices.
“We have also observed that candidates are shying away from participating in the electoral process because they lack the resources to do so. Parameters for identifying and supporting candidates with these qualities are being worked out and we will initiate a letter requesting for a meeting with candidates with an intent to provide funding support from our Nigerians in the diaspora coalition for the purpose of media and logistics.
“We have organised diaspora community supports for any good governance candidate and successfully secured high network individuals to underwrite town hall venue bookings and logistics in Europe, North America and Asia. While we are proud of the support and efforts we have made in the diaspora, we will not relent our zeal in providing local Nigeria media and logistics support through our local partners now and in the future.
NDN hinges its guide to good governance in a country on the six principles of independence, openness, accountability, integrity, clarity and effectiveness. It added that democracy thrives better where good governance is the rule and not an exception.
Mr Ademola added: “Good governance is perceived as a normative principle of administrative law, which obliges each country to perform its functions in a manner that promotes the values of efficiency, transparency, accountability and responsiveness to civil society. We encourage citizens’ engagement to organise, get involved and support good governance candidates running for office.”