Empowering Citizens for Transparent Governance: Safeguarding the Infrastructure Support Fund to Foster National Development

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By Safiya Stephanie Musa

Preventing the misappropriation of the Infrastructure Support Fund (ISF) by State Governments requires proactive citizen engagement and oversight. Here are essential steps Nigerians can take to ensure transparency and accountability:

1. Demand Transparency: Nigerian citizens should demand transparency from their State Governments regarding the allocation and utilization of ISF funds. Public inquiries, requests for information, and active participation in budget hearings can foster transparency.

2. Monitor Budget Allocations: Vigilantly track the state’s budget to ensure that the allocated ISF funds are used for their intended infrastructure projects and not redirected elsewhere.

3. Advocate for Auditing: Call for regular audits of the ISF to verify proper fund utilization and identify any discrepancies or mismanagement.

4. Collaborate with Civil Society Organizations (CSOs): Engage with CSOs focused on governance, transparency, and accountability to monitor government activities and advocate for proper fund utilization.

5. Report Corruption: Promptly report suspicions of corruption or misappropriation of funds to relevant anti-corruption agencies.

6. Participate in Oversight Committees: Actively participate in oversight committees or boards responsible for monitoring ISF usage to enhance accountability.

7. Promote Media Coverage: Encourage media outlets to regularly report on the progress of ISF projects to highlight any irregularities and keep the public informed.

8. Strengthen the Legal Framework: Engage in advocacy efforts to push for stronger laws and regulations that promote accountability and penalize corruption.

By embracing these proactive measures, citizens can play a pivotal role in preventing fund diversion from the ISF, ensuring resources are utilized effectively for the public’s benefit, and fostering development through critical infrastructure projects.

– Safiya Stephanie Musa is an Economist and a Policy Analyst

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