At least 15 governors are in breach of Section 7 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended, Journalist findings have shown.
They include Benue, Kwara, Cross River, Anambra, Akwa Ibom, Abia, Kogi, Osun, Plateau, Imo, Ondo, Bayelsa, Yobe, Bauchi and Sokoto states.
Section 7 of the Constitution aptly provides that “The system of local government by democratically elected local government councils is under this Constitution guaranteed; and accordingly, the government of every state shall, subject to Section 8 of this Constitution, ensure their existence under a Law which provides for the establishment, structure, composition, finance and functions of such councils.”
Journalist findings show that at the moment, no fewer than 14 governors obtained approvals from their respective state Houses of Assembly and constituted caretaker committees in place of elected chairmen.
Late last year, the Senate asked the Federal Government to block statutory allocations to any local government council not democratically elected.
The Red Chamber unanimously resolved that this move would deter the dictatorial tendencies of state governors.
The resolution was sequel to a motion moved by Sen. Abba Moro on the urgent need to halt the erosion of democracy vis-a-vis the dissolution of elected councils in Benue State.
The lawmakers argued that the placement of Caretaker Committees to replace Elected Councils is an aberration, undemocratic and a breach of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
Senator Victor Umeh (representing Anambra Senatorial district), who seconded the motion, lamented that the issue has continued to undermine the local government system in Nigeria.
Consequently, the Senate condemned the arbitrary dissolution of democratically elected local government councils in Benue and other federation states.
To save the face of Nigeria’s democracy, the Senate urged Alia to adhere to his oath of office, obey the rule of law, review the constitution of caretaker committees, and reinstate the elected councils.