JUST IN: Nigerians should be happy about court ruling on LG autonomy, says Gov Otu

KUNLE SANNI

Governor Bassey Otu of Cross River State has called on Nigerians to accept the recent Supreme Court ruling, affirming that local governments should receive their allocations and funding directly from the federation account.

The governor made this statement on Thursday evening while briefing State House reporters at the presidential villa in Abuja.

Otu emphasized that the President Bola Tinubu-led administration and its Renewed Hope Agenda upholds the tenet of the rule of law.
He expressed confidence that no one would oppose development in local governments.

He said, “About the supreme court judgement. Nigeria is a democratic country, and we know very well that President Tinubu and the renewed hope agenda is a democratic one. And I believe that the judgment is taken in very good faith. All Nigerians should be happy about it.

“I don’t think anybody is against development in the local governments. I don’t think so. I have not read the details of the judgment as passed when we do, I believe that the application of it should add some pep to our local government administration

His comment comes against the backdrop of the recent Supreme Court ruling that the federal government should henceforth pay allocations directly to local government councils from the federation account.

Delivering judgment in the suit on Thursday, a seven-member panel of justices held that state governments have continued to abuse their powers by retaining and using the funds meant for LGAs.

The apex court also ordered the federal government to withhold allocations of LGs governed by unelected officials appointed by the governor.

WESTERN POST Online had reported President Bola Tinubu described the recent ruling by the Apex Court as welcoming.

He said the decision affirms the spirit, intent, and purpose of the Constitution of Nigeria on the statutory rights of local governments.

This newspaper also reported that Governor Chukuma Soludo of Anambra State has urged both the state and federal governments to increase transparency at all levels of government.

He stated that the recent ruling is essential for the efficient utilization of public resources, ultimately alleviating the burden on the common man.

Soludo had also disclosed that state governors under the aegis of the Nigerian Governors Forum would be meeting on the matter.

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