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On Federal Govt And Local Councils

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By

Prof G.G. Darah

It is laughable that the Federal Government has sued the states over the administration and control of LGAs.

In point of law, it is the states that should sue the FGN for usurping the powers of the states over councils. Section 7 of the 1999 Constitution stipulates that there shall be democratically elected local councils in the country to be created, administered and funded by the states.

The Federal Government has no business with the creation and running of the 774 councils in the country.

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In point of fact, the councils do not constitute a tier of government in the Federal system. Only the Federal Government in Abuja and the states are the tiers of the government or federating units. It is the various military junta regimes that imposed an unworkable and corrupt unitary system on the country from 1966. With military fiat, junta heads arbitrarily created local governments, dashing 44 to resource-famished Kano and only 20 to Lagos that is more populous and richer than Kano. This injustice has prevailed for nearly 50 years, leading to the robbery and fleecing of resource-endowed states like those in the oil-rich Niger Delta and Lagos.

Let me add that this matter was exhaustively discussed at the 2014 National Confab. It was unequivocally resolved that Section 7 of the 1999 Constitution be respected, that is, only the states can create, administer and fund democratically elected councils.

It is an irony that Bola Ahmed Tinubu who, as Lagos State’s Governor, who battled President Olusegun Obasanjo on the matter is now, as President, doing worse than what he pugilated with Obasanjo over.

I think the states will floor the Federal Government in this legal combat.

Prof G.G. Darah

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