Kuhonga, an anti-corruption mapping platform, seeks to address the question “how can we crush corruption in Africa?” by using data and maps to track activity related to corruption.
Created by Nathan Wangusi, an environmental engineering PhD candidate at the University of Florida, it was incorporated in January 2012 as an implementation of Ushahidi.
Lewis Kirvan, Kuhonga’s Chief Operations Officer, said: “Kuhonga’s essential insight is that crisis mapping and crowd-sourcing of data can be used to tackle the slow-motion crisis of endemic corruption. Social media has proven integral to revolutions in the Middle East and social movements like the Occupy movement in the United States.”
According to a post by Kirvan on Ushahidi’s website, the platform “hopes to extend the success of social media by using Ushahidi’s crowdsourcing capabilities to tackle a different sort of social problem. Rather than facilitating a short term social need, such as organisational support for a social movement or a disaster response team, Kuhonga hopes that a simple and efficient means of reporting corruption can also lead to social change through institutional reform”.
Combating the endemic corruption in Africa can prove to be the key to unlocking resources to delivering basic services to the citizens as corruption tends to result in under-delivered projects and in some cases not delivered at all.
Kirvan added: “Kuhonga’s guiding principle is that creating good institutions – institutions free from endemic corruption – is a “first problem”. It is a problem that should be addressed as a separate social issue and that should be addressed first because it underlies and complicates the effects of other social problems.
“We believe that other problems cannot be permanently solved until civil society turns away from an extractive and corrupt model and towards an inclusive public service model.”
Kuhonga’s approach is available via Slideshare.