Monday, May 20, 2024

Senate urges FG to stop allocation of funds to LG caretaker committees

“And we believe that empowering local government areas holds the key to unlocking a brighter future for all Nigerians,” he said.

• May 15, 2024
Nigerian Senate floor
Nigerian Senate floor (Credit: Nigeria Guardian)

The Senate has urged the federal government to stop further allocation of funds to caretaker committee-led local government councils nationwide.

This followed the adoption of a motion by Sen. Suleiman Kawu (NNPP-Kano) on “urgent call on the President to resuscitate local government system in Nigeria”, at Wednesday’s plenary.

“The challenges we face, persistent security threats, rural-urban migration, decaying infrastructure and widespread unemployment, demand bold action.

“And we believe that empowering local government areas holds the key to unlocking a brighter future for all Nigerians,” he said.

Moving the motion, Mr Kawu said that the dream of achieving the objectives of the local government system encountered harsh realities.

“Successive governments often eroded local autonomy, limiting their financial resources and control over decision-making.

“Corruption scandals and mismanagement tarnished the image of some local governments, fueling public cynicism,” he said.

The lawmaker also expressed worry that some governors played a crucial role in frustrating local government autonomy in Nigeria through constitutional alteration processes.

“With limited financial and operational autonomy, local governments may struggle to effectively address local security concerns like community policing initiatives and intelligence gathering.

Contributing, Sen. Ahmad Lawan (APC-Yobe) said that local governments must be effective and must be guaranteed by the Constitution.

” I urge that we find a way of improving the capacity of those who run the local government system. Because I believe this requires devolution of powers.”

Sen. Orji Uzor Kalu (APC-Abia) said that local government funds must be returned 100 per cent to the local government councils and improve the capacity of the people running the councils.

Sen. Ifeanyi Ubah (APC-Anambra) said that to promote good governance in the country, “we must amend Section Seven of the 1999 Constitution. We need to amend so that we can start having values for democracy in our states.

“A state like Anambra has not conducted local government election in the last 18 years.”

In his remarks, the deputy senate president, Jibrin Barau, who presided over plenary, said the motion was apt and in tandem with “the zeal of all senators to bring sanity to bear in the local government system.”


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