Monarch seeks traditional rulers’ control of local govts

By Nudoiba Ojen

The Olugbon of Orile-Igbon in Oyo State, Oba Francis Alao, has charged the Federal Government and the National Assembly to give control of the 774 local government areas in Nigeria to traditional rulers for optimal performance.

Oba Alao, who is also Vice-Chairman of Oyo State Traditional Council, spoke in his palace at Orile-Igbon in the Surulere Local Government Area.

The monarch, who lamented the widespread poverty in the country, said the ineptitude of the local government administration had contributed in no small measure to the development.

Oba Alao said, “As far as we are concerned, there is no local government all over the country anymore. Its administration lacks performance. All the 774 local governments across Nigeria are not working at all. Let the traditional rulers take over the position.

“Also, let there be local government and judiciary autonomy. This will help the nation to grow and bring progress to the nation.

“There are lots of fantastic traditional rulers who are equipped academically more than those who we put there. We have retired judges, military officers, accountants and a lot of others.

“Let them give us a constitutional role to play so that the nation can be healed. There is a lot of division all over the country. The crime rate is high because 80 per cent of Nigerians are living in abject poverty.

“There is no middle-class Nigerian anymore. It is either you are poor, extremely poor or you are extremely rich. No rich Nigerian. Those who are rich, are extremely rich and they are not even up to two per cent of the entire population. The rest are poor. There are no middle-class Nigerians economically.”

As part of efforts to bring change, Oba Alao charged President Tinubu to appoint people with good character and those who fear God into his government.

The monarch said, “President Tinubu should look at those people he is appointing. He should be able to appoint people who have a fear of God; character must be part of the criteria used in the appointment of public officers.

“He must choose people with good character, not only people with academic qualifications. They should have good character so that when they get to the office, they will not continue to do things the way the others have been doing,” he said.

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