Hamzat Lawal, ICIJ named finalists for $120,000 sustainability award in Sweden

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Hamzat Lawal
Hamzat Lawal

Hamzat Lawal, anti-corruption activist and Founder of Follow The Money, has emerged as a finalist for WIN WIN Gothenburg Sustainability Award in Sweden.

Lawal was shortlisted alongside Icelandic whistleblower, Jóhannes Stefánsson, Integrity  Watch Afghanistan (IWA), Italy’s lead prosecutor, Nicola Gratteri, and the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ).

Lawal and the other finalists were selected “after the jury carefully reviewed 64 nominations from 34 countries around the world, actively oppose corruption and thus strengthen our opportunities for a sustainable future,” Emma Dalvag, chairperson of the WIN WIN award jury, said. 

The prize has been handed out yearly since 2000 and former winners include Kofi Annan, former UN secretary-general and Al Gore, former vice-president of the US.

The winner receives SEK (120,000 USD).

Dalvag added that $4 billion is lost every year to corruption across the globe, an enormous figure, which be compared with the $2.9 billion financial gap that needs to be filled in order for the world to achieve the UN Sustainable  Development Goals by 2030.

“Fighting corruption often involves risks and requires courage. We are very proud to present a wide range of finalists who, in different ways and in different parts of the world, fight for a fairer and more sustainable world,” she said. 

Lawal, who was delighted by the announcement said the “the of Follow The Money is tackling corruption in government’s funding and ensuring that everyone, even in the remote areas, has equal access to basic needs”.

“More importantly, during this COVID pandemic where our lives have been changed and altered,  trying to build back better should be the ultimate goal.

“I am honoured that the Gothenburg Sustainability Award  recognises our efforts in this regard.” 

Hamzat Lawal is an anti-corruption activist and the founder of Follow The Money, a Pan-African grassroots data-driven movement, and leads a team of technology & innovation-driven campaigners to amplify the voices of marginalised grassroots communities in promoting accountability as regards the utilization of public funds focusing on specific communities across Africa.

His Follow The Money initiative won the United Nations  Sustainable Development Goals Mobilizer 2019 Award and the Council of Europe’s 2019 Democracy Innovation  Award.

Lawal was also recognised as one of the world’s 100 most influential people in digital government by  Apolitical in 2018 and 2019.

He has also been ranked as one of the 100 most influential Africans along with Amina  Mohammed, , and Chimamanda Adichie.

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