The newly inaugurated Chairmen of the six Area Councils in the Federal Capital Territory have been challenged to be proactive and think out of the box to find ways of improving the councils’ revenue. FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello stated this at the inauguration ceremony of the newly elected Area Council Chairmen and Vice Chairmen at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.
The minister said it has become necessary to source for additional source of revenue as a result of the dwindling economy the country is passing through.
“Permit me to tell you that serious challenges await you at the Area Councils. The bitter truth is that all the six Area Councils cannot be able to pay staff salaries and other obligations. Even though the FCT administration has gone extra mile to assist the Area Councils, you are better off taking proactive measure to your various councils,” he said.
He reminded the new chairmen about their campaign promises saying people have a lot of expectations from them to deliver. While admonishing the new chairmen to be leader for all, irrespective of party affiliations, tribe or religious inclination, the minister advised them to lead with the utmost fear of God and the best interest of the people at all times.
“You are now for all, irrespective of party, religion, tribe, age or gender. So be humble in your leadership and appreciate the role played by all stakeholders towards your victory,” he added.
Bello urged the chairmen to ensure accountability and prudence in the management of their councils’ resources; adding “you must turn around the potentials of your Area Councils into wealth, by boosting revenue and blocking leakages, so that your councils’ can be financially independent and you will be able to deliver the expected dividends of democracy”.
FCT Permanent Secretary, Dr Babatope Ajakaiye urged the in-coming chairmen to be up and doing in keying into the change agenda of the Federal Government, as it relates to delivering the dividends of democracy at the grassroots.
The new chairman of Bwari Area Council, Mr. Musa Dikko who responded on behalf of the swore-in chairmen thanked the residents for giving them the mandate and promised to live up to expectation of the people.
The new chairmen of the six Area Councils of the Federal Capital Territory were sworn-in by the FCT Chief Judge, Hon. Justice Ishaq Bello.