Amby Uneze in Owerri
A former deputy speaker, House of Representatives, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, has flayed members of the Imo State House of Assembly over their rejection of the proposed amendment bill seeking financial autonomy for local governments.
The bill was forwarded to all the 36 state assemblies by the National Assembly for their concurrence as part of the process of altering some identified clauses in the constitution which the National Assembly had earlier proposed an amendment to the constitutional provision that hitherto guarantees State Joint Local Government Accounts.
The amendment bill, which was opposed by Imo lawmakers, sought that the joint account be set aside such that each local government would be able to operate special and distinct accounts thereby pushing to secure financial independence for the third tier of government.
Ihedioha described the failure of the state House of Assembly to ratify the bill as outlandish, unacceptable and against the interest and aspiration of the generality of the people many of whom according to him, reside in the local communities.
He noted that the action of the lawmakers had demonstrated that they are insensitive to the plights of the wide spectrum of the local people who rely on the local governments for their livelihoods, social amenities and other facilities for survival.