By: Joy Odor/Kaduna
Taraba State former Senator, Senator Bala Adamu has advocated the need for the State Governments to make local government administration forerunner for a stronger Nigeria especially in the Northern region.
Senator Adamu stated this at the Partnership to Engage, Reform and Learn (PERL) Engaged Citizens One-Day Town Hall Meeting on Local Government Autonomy in Kaduna, North-West, Nigeria on August 30, 2018.
According to him, if the administration at the LGA is strong, then the whole system of the country would be strong, saying a strong LGA system ensures better lives for the populace.
Senator Adamu was of the opinion that labour leaders are the key in ensuring LGA autonomy in the Northern zone, pointing out that only Sokoto State has passed LGA autonomy across the region.
The former Taraba State Senator stressed that the issue of LGA autonomy is dear to his heart and charged all the participants at the town hall meeting to contribute in whatever way they opportune to entrench and deepen democracy through granting LGA autonomy.
“With autonomy, their funds from the federation would accrue to the LGA and through due process would be used judiciously. I am a beneficiary of a strong local government system before the Independence of Nigeria.
“In primary school, we were taken care of through monthly stipends; our teachers had quarters to live in and were well motivated.
“Agreed that the population of students was not as much as it is now, but we were adequately catered for through a strong local government structure.
“Our move for LGA autonomy started when we were at the NASS in 1999. We wanted LGA autonomy as enshrined in the 1999 constitution but the then President Olusegun Obasanjo wanted to exert a military mentality, which frustrated our moves.
“We must congratulate ourselves for achieving autonomy in state Houses of Assembly, having achieved that, it is expected that they support the LGAs to also get their autonomy.
He asserted that civil society organizations and organized labour are the voice of the people and enjoined them to stand firm and defend the democratic institutes” Senator Adamu ended.