FG Will Soon End States, LG Joint Accounts – SGF
The Federal Government has said that the joint accounts being operated by both local and state governments would soon end through constitutional means. The Secretary to Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Gida Mustapha, said this on Tuesday in Abuja at the Nigerian LG summit 2019.
The summit was organized by SEGNIP Promotions Limited and the Department of State and Local Government Affairs, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF) with the theme “Emerging Issues in Local Government Administration in Nigeria”.
Mustapha, represented by the Director Special Duties OSGF, Mr. David Attah, said that the age of joint accounts have become inglorious within the political system. According to him, one of the major areas of friction has been the state and local government accounts which has been grossly abused in the past and which it brought about serious agitation for the fiscal autonomy.
He said that for the LGs, the states have generally starved them of needed funds to discharge their statutory responsibilities and embark on developmental or innovative programmes and projects.
“More so, it is uncanny that most of us fail to see the connection between moribund LGs and Boko Haram insurgency, for instance. Suffice to say that no ‘baby factory’ or incidence of kidnapping would find space where local government councillors are fully involved in governance and work with landlords associations and town unions. “In the midst of all these, there is no state not even one that showed example by devising a system that made the LGs work or gave proper account of the LG funds. “All of us, directly, or tangentially, are exposed to the impact of local government administration daily.
Therefore, mismanagement and maladministration at this level of governance will connote impacting negatively on our people with direct implication for banishing a large number of the population to abject poverty and penury,” he said. He said that with the introduction of the Nigeria Financial intelligent Unit (NFIU) Act and the new LG administration account reporting system, the present administration of President Buhari has taken steps to upgrade the anti-graft or money laundering regulations to reduce vulnerabilities created by cash withdrawals from LG funds throughout the country.
In his keynote, the Governor of Osun State, Isiaka Oyetola, said that successive military government complicated the problems of local councils by investing in them with controversial and unworkable allocation templates and difficult constitutional amendment procedures.
Governor Oyetola, represented by his Chief of Staff, Dr. Charles Akintola said that the nation’s local councils have been victims of various forms of government with their attendant challenges from independence to now. Also, the MD/CEO SEGNIP Promotion Project Consultant, Engr. Kayode Adegbayo, there is gainsaying that of the three levels of governance in Nigeria, the LGs represent a significant tier in the country’s desire for socio-economic transformation and the match to the next level.
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