By Yinka Okeowo
BudgIT, under its Open Budget Partnership project, has signed an MoU with the Ebonyi State government.
The agreement was signed on Wednesday, according to a statement from BudgIT, and it kick-starts a partnership with the state to improve its level of transparency and accountability.
It explained that the success of the Open Kaduna initiative, which started in 2016, with support from BudgIT, had propelled some states in Nigeria to consider exploring the benefits of subnational transparency and accountability.
BudgIT, a civic tech transparency organisation working to keep government transparent and accountability.
“Ebonyi State Government has shown a willingness to improve the principles of transparency as well as establish the culture of accountability within the 13 local government areas of the state.
“The state’s effort to join the Open Government Partnership is also a good move in the direction for public sector reforms and efficient service delivery.
“BudgIT is therefore committed to supporting the Ebonyi State Government through this process. This will include engagement with key government officials to discuss best practices in making budgets readily available and quickly developed in line with the International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS),” the statement added.
With the involvement of the state government’ technical team, BudgIT would be expected to design an Open State portal for the state government, which would serve as a repository for the pre-budget statements, executive budget proposals, enacted budgets, audit reports, implementation reports, financial statements and other public documents.
BudgIT’s Principal Lead Gabriel Okeowo, noted during the MoU signing that ‘open budget system is a win-win course for both the government and the citizens, as it projects the state’ positively for investment and development support opportunities, while citizens would enjoy improved service delivery through public participation and constant engagement with the government’.