The Kaduna State Local Government Accountability Mechanism (LGAM) has lauded the National Assembly (NASS) for the passage of the bill granting full financial and administrative autonomy to local Governments in the country.
The group in a Statement signed by the lead Secretariat of LGAM, Yusuf Ishaku Goje and made available to journalists in Kaduna, therefore, called on the President, Muhammadu Buhari for his Accelerated Assent of the Bill into Law
The statement noted that the bill if assented to by the President, Local government will now have full financial and administrative autonomy to better deliver pro-poor public services at the grassroots.
He noted that, over the years, local governments have been unable to effectively carry out their responsibilities as the closest tier of government to the people, saying many State governors have turned them into glorified agencies where loyalist are compensated as Sole Administrators and the finances controlled through the Joint State Local Government Accounts (JAAC).
He said in view of the above, the passage of the bill by the Nigerian Senate is highly commendable, Particularly, that the amendment if assented into law will repeal the state joint local government account.
“This is to be replaced by the Local Government Allocation Account, where all allocations will be paid into.
“However, it is not yet Uhuru as the State Houses of Assembly will have to pass it and then the President will also have to sign it first into law.
“We therefore call on the State Houses of Assembly to pass it and Mr. President to quickly sign it into law so that millions of Nigerians can begin to enjoy the real dividends of democracy.
“The President must realize that his promise to remove 100 million Nigerians out of poverty is not realizable without a strong local government system.
“The local government system due to its proximity to the grassroots is the only tier of government positioned to effectively reduce poverty, close the inequality gap and check the rising insecurity”, he said.
Goje stressed that passing the bill into law will be one of Mr. President’s biggest legacy and parting gift to Nigerians especially at the grassroots.
‘We eagerly anticipate Mr. President’s assent which will further strengthen our democracy and enable good governance at the lowest tier of government”
It will be recalled that the Nigerian Senate on Tuesday, 1st Of March 2022 passed the Bill granting full autonomy to the 774 local government and council areas in Nigeria.
Ninety-Two members of the red chambers voted overwhelmingly in support of the Bill, after a clause-by-clause consideration of the Committee of the Whole.