Ripples and Effects of Local Government Autonomy and Independence of Tiers of Government in Nigeria


Ripples and Effects of Local Government Autonomy and Independence of Tiers of Government in Nigeria.

In principle, following the Supreme Court ruling affirming the autonomy of the Local Government system, authenticating same as an independent tier of Government, it would not be wrong to opine that Nigeria is gradually evolving.

Fiscal democratisation as it were, would no longer be seen as mere idealistic, but stark reality if the Governors do not device another means, invoking one level of systemic technicality or another to dip their fangs into Local Governments’ purses to rapaciously devour same with shameless alacrity and reckless abandon, treating them as mere appendages with little or no balls at all to resist their shenanigans.

Governors in Nigeria, following their unrepentant greed conjectured ‘JAAC’, where they superintend over local government funds, backing same up with some ‘jankara’ legislation and somewhat legitimized the rape of the Third Tier of Government with the latter zombified to beggarliness, genuflecting in defeat to plead for what is legitimately theirs.

Transition Committee Chairmen, whatever that means, became a conduit for looting and being sprinkled with particles of crumbs and most of them becoming errand boys to Governors in a quasi show of ‘loyalty’ in order to be considered for further errands!

The Supreme Court ruling on the autonomy of the Local Governments in Nigeria is a poser to the detachment of other organs of Government from the Executive in line with the spirit of Baron Montesquieu’s Separation of Powers.

State Legislatures across Nigeria are still at war with the Executive via the call for both Administrative and Financial Autonomy of the Legislature and this, as lucidly Constitutional as it is, is being flouted by Governors, who carry themselves as overlords and running the State like fiefdoms, unchallenged.

If the Legislature, as the bastion of Democracy is still under the apron strings of Governors, then, wither Democracy?

Now, in practice, it is yet to be seen if other organs of Government, following the landmark ruling of the Apex Court, will be resolute enough, not only to make feeble demands, but Constitutionally and legally stamp their feet and vociferously ask for what is theirs, in all intents and purposes.

If Nigeria’s Democracy must evolve in every positive sense, what is good for the goose should also be good for the gander and anything less than the administrative and financial autonomy of all tiers and organs of Government will amount to an irredeemable faux pas.

– Henry Ibn-Madubuike


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