Hundreds of Local Government workers under the umbrella of Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), on Tuesday in Ibadan protested to the Oyo State House of Assembly, demanding the conduct of local government election.
The protesting workers noted that the refusal of the state government in the last six years to conduct the council election has adversely affected the development at the grassroots.
They also agitated for local government autonomy, political, financial and administrative autonomy of the local government.
NULGE President in Oyo state, Alhaji Bayo Titilola-Sodo who led the workers submitted a letter conveying the demands of the workers to the Speaker of the Oyo State Assembly, Hon. Michael Adeyemo.
Titilola-Sodo while addressing newsmen noted that the failure of the state government to conduct local government election in the last six years had hampered the development of council areas in the state.
He insisted that local governments should be given political, financial and administrative autonomy as the third tier of government in Nigeria.
According to him, the continued imposition of caretaker committees on councils negates the constitutional provision that democratically elected officials should administer local governments.
He also called for the scrapping of State Independent Electoral Commissions (SIECs), saying the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should be allowed to conduct elections into all the 774 council areas in Nigeria.
He said, “It is the people that gives mandate through election, if the election will be conducted into the local government, it is not supposed to be State electoral commission but INEC.
“That’s how we can have true democratically process, if it is by state electoral commission, it can never be true representation of the people’s mandate “, NULGE President stressed.
On Financial autonomy, Titilola-Sodo said NULGE wanted the Joint Account system with state government abolished, describing the system as an avenue state governments are using to divert local government allocations.
According to him, “immediately local government allocations get into the account, they disappear leaving the councils at the mercy of God. This has adversely affected development at the grassroots”.