The Paramount ruler of Nembe Kingdom in Bayelsa, King Edmond Dakuru has urged the Federal Government to tackle the lingering issue of local government autonomy by using its veto power.
Dakuru told newsmen last Monday in Port Harcourt, that the measure had become necessary to assist the Federal Government impact efficiently on the local populace.
He urged the Federal Government to exercise its supreme power to achieve financial independence which is key to true democracy for the third tier of government.
The monarch said that local governments over the years had failed in terms of attracting real development to the local populace and so, should be granted autonomy to enable it take full control of its revenue and needs of the local people.
“I don’t believe that legislation is the only way through which governors can effectively supervise local government council chairmen.
” I’m of the opinion that governors should first set good examples, they should remove the logs in their eyes so that they can see clearly the mote in the eyes of their local government chairmen.
“The governors always have the leverage to influence the local government by adopting good leadership and accountability at the state level, after all they are a senior tier,” he said.
Dakuru described as “worrisome”, the insistence by state governors to continue running a joint account with the local government, a strategy which according to him, has been proven to be a hindrance to growth in the third tier of government.
“For the governors to insist that local government allocations passed through the joint account, l think it’s suspicious because this same strategy has been tried over the years and it has not yielded positive result.
” At this point, I think the Federal Government has the right to try other mechanism by proportionately directing local government revenue straight to the local government account.
“We deliberated on local government autonomy during the 2014 Confab and addressing its implementation by this administration will be a step in the right direction.
“If the state governments actually meant well for the local people, they will not kick against local government autonomy as they have no right to deny the Federal Government an opportunity to try other methods aimed at delivering good governance at the grassroots.
“Since the council chairmen live among the local people, it gives the people a higher opportunity of having direct supervision and monitoring in terms of project planning and programmes implementation,” he said.
The traditional ruler also suggested the involvement of technocrats in local government administration, adding that local government council chairmen should be knowledgeable in planning and budgeting to properly address the plight of the rural communities.
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Bode George Urges FG To Relax Lagos Lockdown
A former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olabode George has urged federal government to relax the lockdown it imposed on Lagos State as a result of COVID- 19 pandemic.
George, who made the call in a statement in Lagos, yesterday said the lockdown imposed since March 29 was adversely affecting livelihoods and bringing up security challenges.
He said though government intended to curb the spread of the virus with the lockdown, the directive had left many Nigerians hungry at home without palliatives.
The PDP chieftain noted that there must be a balance between curbing the spread of the virus and protecting livelihoods and asked the government to relax the lockdown while putting safety measures in place.
“Everywhere in Lagos is now locked down. The markets, banking halls, the local grocery shops, the supermarkets, the transportation services are all halted, frozen by the federal government directives since March 29.
“On the surface level, the federal government’s position is to ensure safety, prevent communal spread of the virus and banish this scourge from our shores.
“Lagosians have been staying at home for about a month now. In a largely informal economy where most of our people depend on daily wages, the burden of lack of income is devastating.
“There is a natural growing anger in Lagos as the most vulnerable are ravaged with hunger,” George said.
Prince Charles, Kagame, Others Condole Buhari Over Loss Of Kyari
Prince Charles has condoled with President Muhammadu Buhari, the government and people of Nigeria over the death of Abba Kyari, the former Chief of Staff to the President.
According to a statement by Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, in Abuja, last Wednesday, Prince Charles described the death of Mallam Kyari was “a desperately sad news”.
Prince Charles regretted that the death of Kyari had occurred through “this pernicious virus…I can only begin to imagine what an immense gap Mr. Kyari’s untimely death will leave in Your Excellency’s life and my heart goes to you and Mr Kyari’s family”.
In a message through the Embassy of Rwanda in Abuja, President Paul Kagame, the government and people of Rwanda extended their heart-felt condolences to the Nigerian leader.
Kagame used the opportunity “to express solidarity to the government and people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as we are faced with the Covid-19 global crisis”.
The former Vice president, Architect Namadi Sambo in his own message to the President, described the death of Abba Kyari as a “monumental national loss”.
In his condolence message to the president, an industry leader and businessman, Abdulsamad Rabi’u said he was deeply saddened by what he described as “this colossal loss”.
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