Sunday, July 14, 2024

Supreme Court Grants Full Autonomy To LGAs

The Supreme Court of Nigeria has endorsed autonomy for the 774 local governments in the country.

The ruling puts an end to the abuse of their affairs by State Governors.

The apex court directed that Local Government allocations from the Federation Account should be paid directly to them henceforth and barred state governors from receiving, tampering, or withholding funds meant for the local government.

In his lead judgment read by Justice Emmanuel Agim, the apex court observed that the refusal of the state government on financial autonomy for local governments has gone on for over two decades.

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He said local governments have since stopped receiving the money meant for them from the state governors who act in their stead.

Justice Agim noted that the 774 local government councils in the country should manage their funds themselves.

He dismissed the preliminary objections of the defendants (state governors), saying that the Accountant General of the Federation has the right to institute the suit and protect the constitution.

The governors were also barred from dissolving democratically elected officials of local governments and doing so would amount to a breach of the 1999 Constitution.

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