NULGE: LG Autonomy Will End Insecurity, Poverty, Others

The Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) has said local government autonomy would bring solutions to insecurity, poverty and other social vices bedevilling the nation.

Speaking with reporters recently, the President of NULGE, Olatunji Ambali, said President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has identified the vices and found local government autonomy as the solution.

“We are grateful to God that a courageous leader has been elected in the person of President Bola Tinubu who has understudied the challenges bedeviling Nigeria in terms of insecurity, poverty, infrastructure gap, unemployment and took the bull by the horns,” he said.

He noted that Tinubu’s position was also informed by the fact that Nigerians are not feeling the impact of the economic intervention coming from the federal government.

“You cannot also blame him because all his interventions in the past one year have not rubbed off on the community because somebody somewhere has been seizing local government funds and also diverted the IGR of local governments,” he said.

He said 70 per cent of Nigeria’s problem would be solved when autonomy returns to the local government.

The NULGE chief, who is also the treasurer of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), said the union was grateful to the President for his support of the union’s struggle.

“However, Mr. President has done the needful, we are happy and express our solidarity with him. We also pray for victory for the case in court.

“Once we have a functional local government system that has direct access to our allocation, and can carry out day-to-day activities, deliver dividends of democracy, more than 70 percent of Nigeria’s problems would have been resolved,” he said.

According to Ambali, the rural roads would open up, infrastructural challenges would reduce, there would be food security at the grassroots because it is the local government that owns the land.

He said women and youths would be trained in vocational skills, which would reduce unemployment and poverty.

On insecurity, the NULGE president said once there are functional local governments, “they can organise the locals, register traditional security outfits, kit them and remunerate them well”.

He said what Nigeria needs is community police and not state police. Highlighting the expectation of the union at the Supreme Court, Olatunji said the union “prays that God Almighty would give us victory”.

He added that the union would also want the court to scrap the joint account allocation committee, which has been a conduit through which money meant for local governments is siphoned.

The NULGE boss also lamented that there have never been credible elections at local government.

He said: “We hope that the state independent electoral commission would be scrapped and their functions transferred to a more credible and more acceptable umpire.”

Expressing his views on why some state governors have been resisting local government autonomy, Ambali said it was not only governors but other state political actors and those “who benefit from a corrupt system and would not want the change’’.

Credit: thenationonlineng.net

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