Owerri - Ambrose Onuoha, President, National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), Imo chapter, has urged members of the Houses of Assembly across the country to support local government autonomy.
Onouha made the call while reacting to the recent passage of a bill by the National Assembly conferring autonomy on local government councils.
He said that before the passage of the bill, the national assembly conducted public hearings during which many Nigerians voiced support for autonomy of the councils.
He said that it was regrettable that after such exercise, the 36 states’ governors are now ganging up against the will of the people.
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He said that if lawmakers in the states voted in favour of the bill and it was assented to, by President Goodluck Jonathan, Nigerians would enjoy enormous benefits from the Act.
"If this bill eventually becomes an act of the National Assembly, in Imo for example, we will have at least 270 elected councilors across the 27 local government areas, 27 executive chairmen and 27 secretaries.
"Apart from the political gains, agriculture would take more meaningful status as the councils will acquire tractors and other inputs needed to step up production in that sector,’’ he said.
Onuoha also said that the autonomy would help to reduce pressure on state governments and the Federal Government for provision of some infrastructure at the grassroots.