NULGE calls for forensic audit of State/LG Joint Accounts

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The Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) has appealed to the Federal Government to appoint reputable auditors to carry out forensic auditing of State and Local Government joint accounts.

Mr Ibrahim Khaleel, NULGE National President, made the appeal while addressing newsmen at the end of its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting on Thursday in Abuja.

Khaleel said that the forensic audit to be carried out should be in the last ten years in order to ascertain how the funds were expended.

According to him, the audit becomes necessary since there is little or nothing on ground in nearly all the local government areas to show for the huge resources allocated to states and local governments over the years.

“It is unfortunate that state governors have continued to delay the passage of the local government autonomy bill, by arm-twisting state legislators to undermine the amendment process,” he said.

He, therefore, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to break his long silence on the vexed issue of local government autonomy, by fulfilling his promise of granting autonomy to local government areas

He added that the president must rise above the perceived political capital in the governors to invest in the trust of the Nigerian majority whom he had promised in his inaugural address.

“That his government was not going to fold its arms to the travesty of governance that was going on in the states and local governments,” he said.

The NULGE president also said that one of the most invasive acts and glaring abuse of power by the governors since the current democratic dispensation was their commandeering of local government funds.

He noted that this was at the expense of the development that they were meant to be provided at the grassroots.

Khaleel, however, said with the recent signing into law of financial autonomy, granted to state assemblies, state lawmakers no longer need to be intimidated in asserting the logic of the constitutional provision.

“This empowers them to check the excesses of governance in their states, ‘’he added.

He, however, said should the state governors and assembly members fail to accede to their yearnings, the union will have no other option than to vigorously mandate all chapters to vote against those standing against local government autonomy.(NAN

Biola Lawal

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