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REVEALED: Ambode’s goodbye gift to LG chairmen

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, has endorsed four-year tenure for Local Government chairmen and other elected council representatives.

The governor signed into law the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) Amendment law, Local Government Administration Amendment law and the Local Government Election Tribunal Second Amendment law on Thursday, May 2, 2019, at the State House, Ikeja, Lagos Mainland, Southwest Nigeria paving way for four-year tenure for council chairmen and others.

The State House of Assembly had recently approved the four-year tenure for council chairmen and other representatives but the governor’s signing seals the law.

The four-year tenure is under the Local Government Administration Amendment law.

Speaking while signing the three bills into law, Ambode said the purpose of the Local Government Administration law is to provide for local government system, establishment and to regulate administration of local authorities and other connected purposes.

“One of the major highlights of this amendment is the increase of the tenure of the Chairman and the Counselors from three years to four years commencing from the date of taking oath of office,” he said.

The governor added that the essence of law in every society was the regulation of human conduct, saying that upon his assumption of office, his administration identified the need to improve on laws that impacted on people’s lives, “particularly that are relevant to us at the local government level which is unarguably the most critical level of governance in the state. It is in this vein, that these laws have been amended to meet current realities.

“The LASIEC amendment law seeks to create the commission to regulate election matters. The need to amend the law arose as a result of current trend in the political space to prevent a laccuna in certain instances.

“Some of the highlights of the amendment include the empowering of the Commission to review the de-alienation of wards in each Local government of the state at intervals of every 10 years and division of each Local government into not less than 10 wards and not more than 20 wards,” he said.

He said that section two of the amendment replaced section 5 of the principal, saying that “A new section 62 created by the amendment provides that the Vice Chairman elected with the Chairman would be sworn in as Chairman in the event of the death of an elected Chairman before been sworn in.

“The amendment to the law has also been proactive as Section 64 now provides that incumbent Chairman who wins a re-run election will have a period spent in office prior to the re-run. Local government Election Tribunal second Amendment law, the highlights of this amendment is to empower the tribunal to allow the time for doing any act or taking any proceedings or such terms as the justice of the case may require, provided that the enlargement of time shall not be granted to extend the life span of the petition beyond 45 days.

“Therefore, more time will now be available for consideration of election petitions,” he said, while commending the Lagos State House of Assembly for the speedy consideration and passage of the laws.

The governor urged residents to see the passage of the laws as a further institutionalisation of the rule of law in the state and commitment of his administration to local government reforms, as the local government system was crucial to grassroots development, sayng that the new laws were clear demonstration of a new golden era where the local government system would experience renaissance to create prosperity and good governance for the people. “By the assent of these bills into law, LASIEC Is empowered to commence necessary administrative processes that will translate to the composition of the local government structure,” he said.

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