Adenike Umar

With the high level of mediocrity Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq continuously display, one should ask if he knows what government entails and what is required to govern a state. It has been three and half years and all answers to the above questions have been answered by incompetence.

The establishment of local government council was enacted in 1963 by act of Parliament it further underwent reform in 1976 but here let us take the Excursion since the return of democracy to Nigeria in 1999. The need for it was seen as the third tier of the government and has been put to effect by past well-learned governments until it was the turn of Abdulrahman. He unfortunately decided to turn it to political followership platforms rather than a platform for sustainable growth and formidable partner in building the state’s economy.

During the campaign of this administration, one of the major promises they made is to ensure a functional local government. One would expect Rahman to work hand in hand with the elected local government council that he met to deliver the Kwara they promised us. Instead, he had them suspended indefinitely pending the time they will be done with the allegation of corruption that they were charged of. It has been over three years, there’s no return of the council, no election, there’s no report from the state house of assembly on these suspended local government councils. We have not heard anything as regards the invitation of EFCC to investigate and shed light on this case. If Rahman is quick to forget his words and promises, we, the good people of Kwara will do well to remind him.

If the governor is transparent and there is nothing to hide, by law, if there is a reason for the chairmen to be away from duty, like being found wanting, it is one of the reasons why there are vice chairmen that can resume their duties immediately. If it involves both chairman and the vice, the speaker of the legislative house is allowed to head the office for a period of time. None of these was considered. Doesn’t it not seem like something is fishy to have all of them being alleged and suspended at a time with no concrete evidence?

Up till this moment, no one knows details about how the affairs of our local government is being run. Not even the people in the Governor’s cabinet know how much goes into the purse of the sixteen local governments as their monthly allocation. This is easy because we do not have the right people occupying these positions. Only our Governor acts as the lord and general of local government affairs. The only person that has access and control over the resources of this sector is him. Is there something the Governor is not telling us?

Our president, Muhammadu Buhari lamented how some Governors are stealing funds that are meant to be for local governments and stunting growth and developments of their states and the country at large. “It beats anyone’s imagination how some Governors would collect money on behalf of the local councils in their state, only to remit half and pocket the remaining half” were his words. He described the lack of integrity and height of corruption in the character of these Governors.

However, he didn’t mention names. I will be like Mr. president and not mention names too but his story sounds like one that I know. That of a Governor that received the sum of 8.2bn SURE-P refunds few weeks ago instead of the local government council. If we have the elected local government in place, this money was supposed to be received by them and the whole money will be used to pay part of the outstanding salaries of the SUBEB teachers and local government workers. Instead, the Governor took charge of the money and used less than 30% for what it was meant for and nobody knows where over 70% of this money was diverted. Nobody knows the whereabout of over 70% of the money that belongs to the MEKUNU. Yet, they call their administration “Ijoba mekunu”. Is Mr. Governor, the mekunu they were referring to? Does Mr. Governor still think we don’t know why he is not conducting local government election?

Welcome to the Rahman led administration, where the Governor’s office boasts of projects that can be better handled by local government. The glorified Gbugu international market does not supersede Complex a former ASA local government built earlier in the year 2000. Instead of the emergency S.As and Commissioners, the election of the local government would have been the best and a plus their administration but Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq remains desperate in his act to become a Napoleon.

Kwarans have learnt and they are wiser now. We are determined to stand against all forms of mediocrity, cluelessness and do better come 2023. Our future is at stake!

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