No fewer than 20 states of the federation have rejected autonomy for local governments in the fourth amendment of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).
In the report of the committee on the review of the 1999 Constitution submitted by Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, yesterday, 20 states voted against local government autonomy while 16 states voted in support. Twenty-four states were needed for local governments to be free from control of state governments.
The 20 states that voted against are Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Ekiti, Enugu, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kwara, Lagos, Ondo, Osun, Rivers, Taraba, Yobe and Zamfara, while the states that gave the yes votes are Adamawa, Ananibra, Abia, Bauchi, Benue, Edo, Gombe, Imo, Kebbi, Kogi, Nasarawa, Niger, Ogun, Oyo, Plateau and Sokoto.
The proposed amendments, which was rejected indicated that “a local government council not democratically elected shall not be recognised by all authorities and persons and shall not be entitled to any revenue allocation from the Federation Account or the state government nor exercise any function exercisable by a local government council under this constitution or any law for the time being in force; and shall stand dissolved at the expiration of a period of four years, commencing from the date the members of the council were sworn in.”