“Local Government is a body meant to manage local affairs by the locals in a designated locality.”
“It boggles the mind how a president or a governor who derives legitimacy from a democratic election turns back to deny the officials at Local Governments level the opportunity to derive such legitimacy from elections.”
“Well before I became the SSG, I met Gov. Peter Obi in Atlanta and said to him, if he left office without conducting Local Government elections, that’s the legacy people will remember him for. He disclosed there were subsisting court judgements that he would not go against being himself, a beneficiary of court rulings. When the litigations were resolved, local government elections were conducted.”
“Those at the grassroots must run local governments. What does the man in Abuja understand about Anyamelu or Awba-Ofemmili, and whether they need roads or water? They don’t understand. But the elected Local Government Chairperson from these vicinities, will know if they need water, healthcare or roads or other unmet needs.”
“Let’s assume we want to formalize the zonal structures. We could say we will have a president elected by the whole country and then each zone will elect Vice-Presidents, that way; you formalize the structure. This will also devolve power to the regions.”
“Anambra State has 21 LG, Kano has 44 and Lagos State government has 21 Local Governments and quite some Local Government Development Areas, because they understand the importance of Local government in ensuring simultaneous development.”
“Now you have cases where the State is managing sanitation. That’s madness, total madness. It’s not their remit. It is the responsibility of the municipal councils and Local Governments. When I was growing up in Onitsha it was the..Onitsha Urban County Council that handled sanitation and conservancy .”
“On 30 August 2012, President Jonathan declared Anambra State the 10th oil-producing State, but Anambra is yet to earn a kobo from derivation since then. Lagos was only declared an oil producing in August 2016 but they’ve started earning derivation. That’s failure of leadership at the State.”
“If you adapt to global best practices, it is only proper that you hold Local Government Elections. It creates functionality, integration and development.”
Mr. Obaze is the former Secretary to the State Government of Anambra State, Nigeria from 2012 to 2015 - MD & CEO, Oseloka H. Obaze. Mr. Obaze also served as a former United Nations official, from 1991-2012, and as a former member of the Nigerian Diplomatic Service, from 1982-1991.
Selonnes Consult Ltd. is a Strategic Policy, Good Governance and Management Consulting Firm, founded by Mr. Oseloka H. Obaze who served as Secretary to Anambra State Government from 2012-2015; a United Nations official from 1991-2012 and a Nigerian Foreign Service Officer from 1982-1991.