Saturday, May 8, 2021

Financial autonomy: Enugu Assembly laud President Buhari’s assent


Jaafar Jaafar
Jaafar Jaafar is a graduate of Mass Communication from Bayero University, Kano. He was a reporter at Daily Trust, an assistant editor at Premium Times and now the editor-in-chief of Daily Nigerian.
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Some members of the Enugu State House of Assembly have commended President Muhammadu Buhari for signing into law, the financial autonomy for state assemblies and the judiciary.

The chairman, Assembly Committee on Information, Paul Nnajiofor, told the News Agency of Nigeria in Enugu on Saturday that the law was long overdue.

According to him, the importance of the presidential assent to the financial autonomy of the state assemblies and judiciary can never be over emphasized.

Mr Nnajiofor said that prior to the assent, some state legislators were virtually rubberstamp to their respective state governors.

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He explained that some states could not take independent decisions or perform their constitutional stipulated legislative functions without recourse of their state governors.

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The lawmaker said that the state governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, however, gave them free hand to operate as he was a former legislator who knew what lawmaking was all about.

Mr Nnajiofor said all these years, state assemblies could not perform optimally because they were not financially independent.

He said that the merit of the presidential assent were too numerous.

“We are now going to conduct the business of lawmaking, representing and oversight function creditably without recourse to anyone,” he said.

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He pointed out that Nigerian’s would be the major beneficiaries because democracy was now on course and would be practised the way it ought to be, like the developed countries.

In his reaction, the member representing Awgu South Constituency, Nelson Uduji, said the presidential assent to the financial autonomy of the state legislature and judiciary was a welcome development and a step in a right direction.

Mr Uduji said the financial autonomy would go a long way in strengthening the function and capacity of all the legislators and judiciary workers across the country.

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“It is timely and as well long overdue. Henceforth, we are going to operate on a financial independence without any interference from state governors.

“It is said that he who pays the piper dictates the tune that is why almost all the state legislators and judiciary are appendages of the state governors.

“Governors dictates for us, influence most of our motions, resolutions and bills to soothe their intentions and desires,” he said.

The legislator however, said the development would make them truly independent and enhance their legislative productivity as well as deepen and sustain democracy.


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