28th March, 2011
Governor Babatunde Fashola has berated the Federal Government for refusing to give the 37 Local Council Development Areas constitutional recognition.
Speaking during the Local Government Day 2011 held at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, the governor acknowledged the enormous responsibility and burden that local governments bore as a result of their statutory responsibility of providing for not less than 277 healthcare centres and 20,000 teachers in primary schools.
Fashola denounced lack of electricity which forced the councils to resort to the use of generators to power most of the facilities, adding that the critical part of fulfilling the millennium development goal was eradicating maternal mortality.
The governor stated that although the LGAs had limited funds, they doggedly continue the immunisation programme by eradicating killer diseases such as polio and measles, thereby resulting in a polio-free state. He also said that despite the outbreak of cholera across the country, Lagos had had no case of the outbreak, saying it was imperative for local governments to be financially empowered so that they could maximise their output which could be done by having a change in the revenue sharing formula.
Fashola questioned why the Federal Government should take 52 per cent of the revenue, saying it should give more money to the states and local governments.
The governor stressed that by allocating more resources to the local governments in the country, more opportunities would be created for the local dwellers, adding, â€œthe posterity of the local government is the prosperity of the state and the prosperity of the state is the prosperity of the nation.â€
Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Prince Rotimi Agunsoye, advocated the empowerment of the third tier of government by the Federal Government so that they could be able to deliver more qualitative services to the residents of the rural areas.
Agunsoye further charged the chairmen of local governments and development areas to be more proactive in their leadership so that the people could enjoy more dividends of democracy.