Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State has called for an upward review of the federal revenue allocation to the Local Government Councils to enable them adequately meet the developmental needs 0f the people at the grassroots.
Uduaghan, who made the call when the National body of the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) paid him a courtesy visit in Asaba Thursday, said if more funds were allocated to local government councils it would enable them to not only pay primary school teachers’ salaries but also build infrastructural projects in the council areas.
He decried the enormous burden the payment of primary school teachers’ salaries was having on the finances of the Local Government councils and called for the allocation of more funds from the federal allocation revenue to enable them meet up their socio-economic responsibilities.
“If we want the local government councils to succeed in Nigeria, the Federal revenue allocation should be reviewed and more funds given to them to enable the council pay primary school teachers’ salaries and carry out their other developmental needs. It is a big responsibility on the council,” he said.
According to Governor Uduaghan, “Over 80% of Local Government Council funds are expended on the payment of primary school teachers’ salaries. This is not healthy for the development of the council areas. If the councils must continue with this responsibility, then the revenue allocation to Local Government Councils needs to be reviewed upwards or the responsibility should be taken from them to enable the council carry out infrastructural projects and meet the developmental needs of the people at the grassroots.”
While imploring the Secretary to State Government, Comrade Ovuozorie Macaulay to expedite action on the release of vehicles promised the Union, Dr Uduaghan asked the Ministry of Works to carry out the construction of the road leading to the NULGE suites in Asaba stating it was part of his administration’s way of strengthening the bond between the state and NULGE.
The governor who appreciated the collaboration and unity existing between the National and State Councils of NULGE, commended the state council of NULGE for its continuous support and cooperation with the state government and promised that his administration would continue to be workers’ friendly and deliver the dividends of democracy to Deltans.
“I want to thank the National Council of NULGE for the show of love and unity existing between her and the state council. I also thank the state chapter of NULGE for the support they have given so far to this administration and I promise to live up to my responsibility of providing more dividends of democracy to Deltans,” he said.
Governor Uduaghan also decried the plight of widows in our society especially the obnoxious cultural practices against them and called for a campaign against these practices. He commended the state council of NULGE for its widow empowerment initiative which was flagged off yesterday and called on them to continue to support the widows in the society.
He noted that his wife was a great supporter of widows through her pet project “I Care” and thanked NULGE for the award which they bestowed on her at the flagged off of the NULGE Widow Empowerment Programme.
“My wife and I are great supporters of widows because of the ill-treatment our culture meted out to them. They are being accused that they kill their husbands. All these obnoxious practices should stop. I strongly support the campaign to improve the lots of widows in our society,” he said.
In a brief address, the National Deputy President of NULGE Comrade Jones Ofunne appreciated Governor Uduaghan for his developmental strides in the state especially the magnificent Government House complex.
He thanked the governor for the rich bond that has existed between the Council and the state government stating that the body will continuously support the Uduaghan administration.
Comrade Ofunne reminded the governor that the promises of constructing the NULGE Suite Road and providing vehicles for the National body have not been redeemed.
He also informed the governor that the National Council identified with the choice of an award to Her Excellency, Deaconess Roli Uduaghan for her contributions to the welfare of widows.
‘’The National body has found the first Lady Deaconess Roli Uduaghan worthy of an award for tireless efforts and contributions to the well-being and welfare of widows across the state. We also pledge our allegiance to the state government and we will continue to carry out our duties without complaints”.