Kogi Grants Financial Autonomy to Local Councils.
Governor Yahya Bello has granted financial autonomy to local government councils in Kogi State and abolished illegal deductions of funds from their monthly allocations.
The Special Adviser to the governor on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Engr. Abubakar Sadiku Ohere made the disclosure at an event to celebrate the one year of the administration.
In a statement signed by the Information Officer in the Ministry, Jordan Akpata, the Special Adviser stated that the administration has re-established Technical Committee for Joint State Local Government Account Allocation Committee (JAAC) in facilitating better scrutiny of the distribution system and enhance quality participation of critical stakeholders in the distribution of accrued revenue to the Local Governments.
Engr. Ohere explained that “the implementation of full financial autonomy to the Local Governments in Kogi ensures all funds are remitted fully to the Local Governments accounts without any encumbrances, unlike in the past.
“It has resulted in the promptness in the release of funds to the Local Governments in Kogi after JAAC meetings and eliminated illegal deductions thereby allowing more resources to the Local councils for their programmes and projects. The Chairmen are responsible for conserving fund to satisfactorily address personnel and overhead costs.”
The Special Adviser further disclosed that apart from the improved welfare of Kogi traditional rulers through the provision of medical service and vehicles, the local councils pay salaries directly to Local Government Staff, Teachers and Pensioners.
He said: “Local Governments have access to their funds without interference which have enabled them to embark on the execution of Physical Projects such as construction of roads, provision of water, maintenance of peace and security, among others.
“We now have automated Local Government Administration where salary payments have been fully computerized and made through e-payments. Platform for the sustainability of this laudable achievement is already in place with a dedicated building to be commissioned soon.
“Loopholes and leakages have been blocked thereby making savings for the Local Governments through prudent management of resources.
“Distribution of Revenue Allocations to the Local Governments has been properly domesticated in the Ministry to enhance effectiveness.”
Engr Abubakar said “the Ministry for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs under Governor Bello has been very committed towards meeting its core mandates of ensuring local governments in the State deliver on their statutory mandate of grassroots development and ensuring traditional institutions in the state are cohesive, resourceful and highly responsive to their roles as custodian of the rich tradition and culture of our people.”