Tinubu on Supreme Court Judgement: Nigeria belongs to all of us.


… holds crucial meeting with governors

President Bola Tinubu has reminded all and sundry that Nigeria belongs to all citizens.

He noted this as he lauded the Supreme Court’s judgment affirming the constitutional rights of local governments.

According to him, he pursued the case in the interest of all, noting the critical role that local governments play  in advancing effective governance at the grassroots level.

The insistence of the Tinubu government that allocations to local governments should directly go to them had surprised observers based on his closeness to many of the governors who do not want to guarantee the councils autonomy.

But in a statement released on Thursday, Tinubu highlighted the importance of the judgment, describing it as a reaffirmation of the Constitution.

The statement was signed by Tinubu’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale.

He noted that ineffective local government administration has been a significant obstacle to national progress, with governance at the grassroots level nearly non-existent.

“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 judgment, 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 judgment will ensure that it will be only those local officials elected by the people that will control the resources of the people,

“This judgment 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.”

Meanwhile, the President is currently in a closed-door meeting with Vice President Kashim Shettima and some governors in his office at the State House, Abuja.

The ongoing meeting kicked off almost immediately after the President concluded discussions with the leaders of organised Labour, who met with him to discuss issues around the expected new minimum wage.

The governors in the meeting include the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF), AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara); Charles Soludo of Anambra; and Usman Ododo of Kogi.

Although the agenda of the ongoing meeting could not be ascertained at the time of filing this report, it is significant to note that it is coming a few hours after the Supreme Court delivered a landmark judgement on the financial independence of the third tier of the federation, the local government.

The Supreme Court has held that henceforth, the Federal Government should pay any money standing to the credit of the Local Governments in the Federation directly to the Local Government Areas managed by democratically elected officials.

It also held that it is illegal for governors to dissolve democratically elected local governments and orders the federal government to henceforth withhold allocations to local governments governed by unelected officials appointed by the governor.

The Supreme Court made these pronouncements in its judgment in the suit filed by the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) seeking full autonomy for the local government administrations.


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