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Abolish State Electoral Commissions- ALGON President

For Nigeria and Nigerians to have a credible local government elections and by implication a local government system that will be responsive and responsible to the yearning of the populace in Nigeria, the current Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON) President Nwabueze Okafor incumbent chairman, Enugu South Local Government Council has canvassed among other things for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to take over the conduct of local council elections.
Nwabueze Okafor made the call during an African Independent Television (A.I.T) programme Kakaki in which he was interviewed alongside Dr. Adebayo-Ilorin East local government Chairman under the Caption: Local Government System Problems and Prospects and the Way Forward.
Nwabueze during the programme adduced that one of the inherent difficulties militating against the functionality of the local government system was the fact that State Independent Electoral Commissions under the tutelage of governors still conduct elections and by so doing the local government system ends up being an off-shoot of the state apparatus, an appendage. In such a system he said … “the local government becomes subservient to the state government and this makes it impossible for state governors to leave local government funds alone.
He said, “INEC as it were should conduct elections in the local government, the same day it conducts the other elections, the state governments will automatically see and appreciate the autonomy of the LGAs since it (state) did not midwife its inception and so would recognize and adhere to that separation of powers enshrined in the constitution.”
The ALGON president thus canvassed that if the INEC is to help reduce and if possible remove the meddling and pilfering of funds by state governors in the LGAs then it should stop State Independent Electoral Commissions from conducting LG elections. “Until this is done, the state governors would continue to meddle and in fact hold LG councils by the jugular financially thereby impeding on the rate of development and proper fiscal autonomy of the councils as stated in the constitution,” Nwabueze said.

Paschal Chikezie Agbadah

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