CLEEN Foundation clocked 20th years as a leading non-governmental organization (NGO) promoting public safety, security, justice, research, and advocacy in Nigeria. Although Nigerian democracy seems to be witnessing shrinking of the civil space, CLEEN Foundation has managed to weather the storms to achieve two decades of impact and steady growth.
CLEEN Foundation was originally founded by Mr. Innocent Chukwuma in 1998 as the Centre for Law Enforcement and Education in Nigeria. The first direct support CLEEN received was a grant of 1000USD from the Netherland’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in August 1998.
Some of our earlier success stories include the establishment of community policing forums in 14 local government areas drawn from the six geo-political zones of Nigeria; reactivation of the Police Public Complaints Bureau(PCB) in four states; developed guidelines for police officials on electoral duty; monitoring of police conducts from 2003 – 2018 general elections, working with the Police Service Commission, the Nigeria Police Force and other strategic partners to develop capacity for the exercise of their mandate. Other successes of CLEEN Foundation include coordination of Altus Police Station Visitors Week from 2006 to 2013; production of good practice guide on Democratic Governance of the Security Sector; internship and training program that produce local, regional and international ambassadors of CLEEN Foundation across the globe.
In furtherance of our mission statement, we have partnered with government agencies including the Nigeria Police Force and the Nigerian Armed Forces, civil society organizations, international organizations, development partners, the media and the organized private sector etc.
CLEEN Foundation is today an institution of immense value to Nigeria and the global community. It has become a hub for knowledge enhancement in public safety, security, justice, research, accountable and democratic governance and a reference point for many scholars interested in understanding the criminal justice system in Nigeria.
Over the last 20 years, we have built resilience as an organization featuring on both the supply and demand side of justice and have remained firmly focused on our mission and commitment to delivering the target goals set for the organization. Our major accomplishments ride on the advanced capabilities and continuous improvement of staff and partners of the organization.
Presently, we are nationally, regionally and internationally recognized as one of the leading civil society organizations within the justice sector with offices in Abuja, Lagos and Imo States. We are also, part of global alliances and coalitions possessing strong links with CSOs and state agencies in Africa. We have local, regional and international partners which have expanded over the years.
Given our expertise in the areas of research, policy, advocacy and development models, we have conducted a variety of training for security agents, researchers, academia, think-tanks and NGOs. The work of CLEEN continues to propel the Nigerian government to carry out major reforms in the security sector.
As we clock 20, we recognize that the impacts made over the last 20 years are largely due to the confidence of Nigerian citizens that partnered with CLEEN Foundation. We also recognize the efforts of former and present management and staff and re-affirm our commitment to promoting public safety, security and justice sector reforms throughout Nigeria.
We are happy with the milestone we have made; however, this is also a time of reflection. We celebrated the return of Nigerian democracy in 1999, and believe it is still the best system of government that enables citizens to exercise their rights through free and fair elections.
As the general elections draw closer, we call on all Nigerians to ensure free and credible elections. We urge the electoral management body, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the security agencies to play by the rules, be impartial, non-partisan and professional throughout the conduct of the elections.
A free, fair, transparent, inclusive and violent free election is possible when citizens engage aspirants in fruitful dialogues and campaigns are issue-based devoid of hate speeches or inflammatory statements.
Our votes must count and Nigerians expect the Federal Government to create an enabling environment where citizens will freely exercise their rights to participate, vote candidates of their choice without fear of retribution or violence.
Benson Olugbuo, PhD