Fiscal Autonomy Is Not Enough, LG Needs Political Autonomy Too – Kenneth Okonkwo

Kenneth Okonkwo

Kenneth Okonkwo

Former chieftain of the Labour Party (LP), Kenneth Okonkwo, has applauded the ruling of the Supreme Court in favour of financial autonomy for the local governments in the country.

Recall that the apex court on Thursday ruled that it is unconstitutional for state governors to withhold funds designated for local government administrations.

The landmark judgement, delivered by Justice Emmanuel Agim, emphasized that this practice contravenes the financial autonomy rights of local governments and has persisted for over two decades.

In his reaction to the court ruling, the Nollywood actor in a post via his X account, described the verdict of the apex court as commendable but added that not much would be achieved despite the court ruling if the local councils don’t have political autonomy as well.

He said the people and not the state governors should be the ones to decide those who lead them at the local government levels.

He added that State Independent Electoral Commissions should be scrapped and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) empowered to conduct all elections in the country.

“The Supreme Court judgement that granted fiscal autonomy to local governments is commendable. However, without a commensurate grant of political autonomy, where the people, and not the governors, will democratically decide who will lead them at the local govt level, the theft of local government funds by the governors will not stop. Efforts must be made to scrap the SIEC and empower the INEC to organise all elections
,” he wrote.