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Senate tasks FG to withhold statutory allocations of unelected LGs



The Senate has passed a resolution urging the Federal Government to withhold statutory allocations of local government councils who are not democratically elected.

This followed the adoption of a motion on “Urgent need to halt the erosion of democracy; the dissolution of elected councils in Benue,” at plenary on Friday, sponsored by Sen. Abba Moro (PDP- Benue).

Presenting the motion, Moro said that democratically elected local government councils had been dissolved by Benue Government which replaced them with caretaker committees.

He said constituting caretaker committees was an aberration and alien to the 1999 Constitution.

Moro said that it was the constitutional responsibility of every state to ensure the existence of local government councils by law.

“There are subsisting court rulings directing the governor, the House of Assembly, their agents, privies, among others from tampering with the tenure of the elected local councils,’’ he said.

Contributing, Sen. Victor Umeh (LP-Anambra), said that Section seven of the Constitution guaranteed that there shall be democratically elected officials of local government councils in the country.

He said that the emasculation of elected council officials and replacing them with caretaker committees was a violation of the Constitution.

He said that the National Assembly must rise to protect the laws by defending the Constitution.

Sen. Adams Oshoimole(APC-Edo) said that the Supreme Court had ruled that state governors had no power to dissolve elected local government councils.

He urged the Senate to prevail on the Minister of Finance not to release statutory allocation to unelected local government councils in the country.

Sen. Ali Ndume (APC-Borno) said the matter had to do with the Constitution, urging the dissolved councils to approach law courts for redress.

The President of the Senate, Sen. Godswill Akpabio said dissolution of elected local government councils by state government was illegal.

The Senate urged Gov. Hyacinth Alia of Benue to restore the elected local government councils in the in line with the Constitution.

Kingsley Okoye

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