The new President of the National Union of Local Government Employees, Akeem, has appealed to former President Olusegun Obasanjo to intervene on the planned delisting of local governments from the 1999 constitution by the National Assembly.
This is just as Obasanjo said military leaders and politicians crippled local government administration in Nigeria.
Obasanjo, who claimed that the rot started with the military heads who wanted to have local councils in their respective areas, said the political class took the rot further with corruption.
The former President, in a statement by his media aide, Kehinde Akinyemi, was quoted to have said this while hosting Ambali at his Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library Penthouse residence, Abeokuta.
Obasanjo noted that the survival of the local government administration in the country “is in the hand God.”
He said, “I am of the view that the situation needs prayers. A situation whereby a local government cannot even afford a grader to make local roads motorable, a situation where they cannot build hospital or provide for the educational needs of their people is not what we want the local government to be when we were creating the 1976 Reform.
“Well, the rot actually started by the military leaders who wanted to have such local councils in their respective areas. This increased the number to 774 from about 300.
“But the politicians further made it worse with corruption. These were not what we envisioned, when we created local governments reform in 1976.
“Local governments are expected to provide overall quality of life for the people who reside in their communities, but is that what we have now?”
Earlier, Ambali told Obasanjo that the union needs his intervention and contribution on the planned delisting of local governments from the 1999 constitution by the National Assembly.
He described the bill as an attempt to kill local government administration in the country.
He said, “Delisting the local government from the constitution is grievous. Even with it still functional, they capitalise on the lacuna in Section 7 (6 A and B), which permits the Houses of Assembly to legislate and appropriate funds for local governments to mismanage local government funds.
“We decided to come and inform you about this inhumane step, which you genuinely created in 1976. It will rubbish the good intentions that you had and completely mess up the councils.”
SOURCE: PUNCH NIGERIA