President Tinubu Reacts to Supreme Court Judgement Affirming Local Govt Autonomy

President Bola Tinubu has welcomed the Supreme Court’s decision granting autonomy to the 774 local government councils in Nigeria.

The judgement delivered on Thursday, by Justice Emmanuel Agim, declared that the practice of governors receiving and seizing funds allocated to local government areas (LGAs) is a clear violation of Section 162 of the 1999 Constitution. The court held that no state House of Assembly has the power to make laws that interfere with monies meant for LGAs and that LGAs must be governed by democratically elected officials.

In reaction, Tinubu said the judgement affirms the Constitution’s spirit and intent on local governments’ statutory rights.

The President sees this as a significant step towards effective local government administration, a crucial aspect of the country’s advancement.

Tinubu, in a statement from the presidency, said that local council leaders must ensure people-oriented service delivery, making Nigerians feel the impact of good governance. He believes this judgement will hold local leaders accountable and ensure resources are used for the people’s benefit.

He said, “The Renewed Hope Agenda is about the people of this country, at all levels, irrespective of faith, tribe, gender, political affiliation, or any other artificial line they say exists between us. This country belongs to all of us. By virtue of this judgement, our people – especially the poor – will be able to hold their local leaders to account for their actions and inactions. What is sent to local government accounts will be known, and services must now be provided without excuses.

“My administration instituted this suit because of our unwavering belief that our people must have relief and today’s judgement will ensure that it will be only those local officials elected by the people that will control the resources of the people.

“This judgement stands as a resounding affirmation that we can use legitimate means of redress to restructure our country and restructure our economy to make Nigeria a better place to live in and a fairer society for all of our people,” Tinubu stated.