Spirited moves by some members of the House of Representatives to suspend budgetary allocations to local government caretaker councils has failed, as federal lawmakers at yesterday plenary instead limited their resolutions on the caretaker committees to its illegality.
A motion sponsored by Friday Itulah (Edo/PDP) listed Abia, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Benue, Bornu, Delta, Edo, Ekiti, Gombe, Imo, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Nasarawa, Ogun, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Yobe and Zamfara states as having constituted illegal local government caretaker councils by their respective state governors.
Itulah said the caretaker system of government is alien and unknown to the Nigerian 1999 Constitution (as amended). According to him, the act by state governments breached section 7 (1) of the constitution.
“If this exercise by state government is not checked, it may bring the country to a lawless state,” the motion sponsor said.
With tenures of local government administrations varying in different states and in firm control of state governments, in many cases, governors have turned local councils into personal fiefdoms, appointing and dissolving caretaker committees at will without democratic elections.
In some states, no local election had been conducted since 2003, thereby rendering state Independent Electoral Commissions (SIECs) redundant.
A notice from the Lower House Chairman, Business and Rules, Hon. Sam Tsokwa notified lawmakers of an existing Supreme Court ruling preventing such move to suspend allocations.