The Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), has urged states to retract their steps for allegedly destroying the third tier of government – local government system in the country.
The NULGE President, Mr Olatunji Ambali, said this while addressing newsmen on Wednesday in Abuja.
Amalia said that the call became necessary due to the way and manner in which councils chairmen were ‘selected’ rather than being elected, adding that they usually emerged through appointment devoid of credibility.
According to him, the rising insecurity challenges like kidnapping, banditry, terrorism, among others facing the country will not end soon if there is “consistent rape of the local government system” by cabals and politicians.
”We demand autonomy for local government whereby the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) will be empowered to conduct their council elections.
”The creation of state electoral commissions has resulted in a lot of abuse and lack of transparency in the conduct of council elections.
“What they are doing now is coronation, appointment and promotion of political jobbers and cronies into local government administration, thereby creating an avenue to siphon council resources.
“That is why NULGE clamours for the conduct of credible and acceptable elections at the council level. If the process is thorough, the leadership will be a leadership elected by the people that will be accountable to them and not to the state government,” he said.
He, therefore, called on states governors to seek God’s forgiveness for destroying local government system.
NULGE boss however said that the union was also clamouring for full financial autonomy for the councils.
He said that councils’ allocations should be directly paid to their account.
“The lacuna in the 1999 Constitution (as amended) called the joint allocation account is no longer acceptable to Nigerians and NULGE.
”It must be scrapped because it gives room for stealing and diversion of council funds by politicians at the state level,” he said. (NAN)