Monday, June 14, 2021

Constitutional Review: Why LG Councils Should Handle Agric Matters In Nigeria- NULGE

By Victor Bieni, Asaba

The Leadership of Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) led by its President, Comrade Olatunji Ambali has recommended that the National Assembly, House of Representatives sub-committee On Constitutional Review should allow only the third tiers of Government to handle Agricultural matters in Nigeria.

The media learnt this in the just Concluded House of Representatives Sub-committee on Constitutional Review which was presented by the General Secretary, NULGE, Comrade .C. Aguonye.

The group faulted the 1999 Constitution for creating room for constitutional flaws, lacuna and imbalances in the system. According to NULGE, "We advocated for LG Police, Use of INEC for LG Council Elections, LG Autonomy, solid LG Primary Education, LG Women Ministry, adequate Funding for LGCs and others. The initial budgets and resources meant for both Federal and States Government should be shifted to the Local Governments to boost food production".

The group said: "This ugly development had stifled Local Governments of its interventions in grassroots development such as provision of social services to the people, provision of employment opportunities to rural dwellers so as to curb the concomitant Youth restiveness, unemployment opportunities, food shortages and others".

"We advocate that the Federal and States Government should relinquish the Ministry of Agriculture to be the sole responsibility of the Local Government. This is because lands, farmers, manpower, imputs, natural resources and technical-know-hows are found in the Local Governments; not even in the States or Federal Government".

"Hence, Local Governments constitute more than 71% of the land and it is at the Local Governments that the farmers also reside, it is our opinion that the Ministry of Agriculture should be ceeded to the Local Government with direct funding from the federation account".

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