The Benue State government has called on the Nigerian Senate to rescind its decision on withholding allocation of local governments in the country without duly elected officials.
Daily Trust had reported how the senate unanimously resolved that the federal government should withhold allocation of funds to councils in the country without democratically elected officials following a motion brought to the floor by Senator Abba Moro representing Benue South Senatorial district.
Benue State governor, Hyacinth Alia had sacked the elected officials in all 23 LGAs of Benue State shortly after assuming office earlier this year and appointed caretaker committee only a week ago to man the affairs of the councils.
Addressing a press conference in Makurdi at the weekend, Tersoo Kula, who is Chief Press Secretary to the Governor and Dennis Akura, the Special Adviser on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in the state, urged the senate to review its decision because it was taken in a haste.
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The duo alleged that the facts of the Benue’s case was misrepresented and therefore requested for a proper scrutiny of the matter, further asking Senator Moro to apologise for misleading the senate.
“Governor Hyacinth Alia did not dissolve the democratically elected Local Government leadership in the state. The Benue State House of Assembly that is vested with the constitutional powers to legislate over the local government did.
“Gov. Alia only appointed caretaker committees to avoid lacunas that would have been created following recommendations of the Benue State House of Assembly who investigated, indicted and sacked the 23 elected chairmen who were found to have perpetrated monumental fraud in their councils in active connivance with various councillors”, they said.
Meanwhile, Emmanuel Eche-Ofun John, a media adviser to Senator Abba Moro, in a swift reply to the Benue government, insisted on behalf of his principal that it was illegal to release statutory federation allocation to illegal and unconstitutional contraptions called caretaker committees.
He said that the elected councils must be reinstated, in accordance with the Industrial and High Courts rulings and resolution of the Senate.