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LG Boss Advocates Financial Autonomy For LGAs

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Chairman, Amuwo Odofin Local Government Council of Lagos State, Mr Valentine Buraimoh, has called on the Federal Government to grant total financial autonomy to local governments in the country to enable them function effectively.
Buraimoh stated this on Monday in an interview with newsmen in Lagos.
He said that the total financial autonomy had become necessary to allow local governments execute necessary projects without any hindrance.
For instance, Buraimoh said that even though his council had access to the money being given by the Federal Government, it was not enjoying full financial autonomy because of the limit and condition set by government.
He said that this had been hindering the execution of some projects which needed urgent attention.
“In the true sense, what we are witnessing now is not total financial autonomy because you cannot give autonomy with conditions.
“Imagine where you cannot withdraw more than N500,000. You are giving us conditions. That is not the autonomy we are talking about.
“We are calling for total autonomy for local governments to function at the grassroots level because there are so many demands and projects needing attention such as roads, drainage, agriculture, security and health.
“All these areas are begging for our attention but we can only withdraw N500,000 in a day and the withdrawals must be done simultaneously,” he lamented.
Buraimoh said that council chairmen were expecting total autonomy for local governments to operate as full blown third tier of government.
“As a third tier of government, we should run our own government independently.
“Before now, we have been doing contracts, constructing drainages and initiating skill acquisition programmes and we have been doing very well.
“All we are asking for is just total financial autonomy for us to execute our programmes effectively and efficiently,” he said.
The chairman added that the Federal Government could still monitor the councils’ accounts to ensure that funds were being used for their specified purposes.
“The federal and state governments are free to monitor our accounts. We have a state auditor who monitors our account on a regular basis,” Buraimoh said.

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Ambassador Desmond Akawor Inaugurated As New Rivers State PDP Chairman

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The new Rivers State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Executive Council has been inaugurated in Port Harcourt.
Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly,  Mr Ikuinyi Ibani administered the oath of office on the new executives led by Ambassador Desmond Akawor.
In a charge, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike called on the new executives to work towards consolidating the gains of the immediate past Executive led by Bro Felix Obuah.
He commended immediate past Rivers State PDP Chairman,  Bro Felix Obuah for leading to victory .
He said: “We had challenges at the beginning, but that Executive was committed to service. Obuah has shown capacity to deliver.  It will not be easy for the new executives, but the new executives must start to prepare the party for the challenges ahead.
“Work hard to surpass the records of the past executives.  Working together is key, unity is key.”
Speaking further, Governor Wike said that the Rivers State Government will never condone criminality or any attempt to violate the law.
He said: “But for the steps that , the number of cases would have been more. What makes a leader is the ability  to be firm. I value life more than property.
“Since 2015, we have not demolished any property.  But, someone who was SSG superintended over the demolition of several properties.  Now the person is talking about the draconian process.
“My joy is that majority of Rivers people love what we are doing.”
Governor Wike added that from Information from the State Health Commissioner,  the State is likely to have more cases,  mostly oil workers.
National Chairman of PDP, Prince Uche Secondus congratulated the new Rivers State PDP Executive Committee,  advising them to work for the growth of the party.
Commenting on the fight against coronavirus,  Uche Secondus blasted the Federal Government for refusing to assist State Governments and provide direction for the country.
He said: “The Governors are working without help from the Federal Government.  But for God, the situation would have been worse.
“Governors are running from pillar to post. We must be grateful to Governor Wike for the initiative that he took. What the Governor has done has helped to drastically reduce the number of cases.
“Rivers State is lucky to have Governor Wike at this time of crisis .”
He said those who spread negative propaganda do so out of hatred.
New Rivers State PDP Chairman,  Ambassador Desmond Akawor thanked ththe leadership and members of the party for giving him the opportunity to serve.
He said God has used Governor Wike to rebuild a new Rivers State.  He saluted the resilience of PDP in weathering the storm.
Akawor assured that the new Executive will serve the party diligently.
Immediate Past PDP State Chairman,  Bro Felix Obuah said that the Executive Committee under his leadership led the party to victory  since 2015.
He said that the outgone Executives will continue to work for the party  to ensure future victory.
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Bode George Urges FG To Relax Lagos Lockdown

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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.

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Prince Charles, Kagame, Others Condole Buhari Over Loss Of Kyari

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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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