The Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, has warned the newly sworn- in members of the Local Government Transition Committees to be mindful of the way they manage funds since their actions and inactions would be closely monitored to ensure that they operate with due process at all times.
Abiodun who gave the warning while swearing-in the Chairmen and members of the Local Government Transition Committees at the Cultural Centre, Kuto, Abeokuta, said this is to ensure prudent management of resources at their disposal on developmental projects that would touch people’s lives positively.
“Let me also inform you that you have no absolute powers. You are to ensure that you operate in line with due process at all times. We will incorporate a system check and balance. Your activities will be put under intense watch, while the transition lasts and even beyond. All your actions and inactions are under close scrutiny.
“You are to apply the fund at your disposal with prudence and undertake developmental projects that will touch the lives of our people positively”, he said. The Governor who lamented the unfair treatment given to local governments in the past, noted that they were regarded as the appendices of the State and mere cash centres for payment of salaries that were not regular, adding that his administration was determine to change the narratives.
He said though the local governments were confronted with lot of challenges, their abysmal performance over the years have made people lose confidence and trust in their ability to serve them positively.
Abiodun acknowledged that no nation could boost of excellent performance in public service at the grassroots, if a large percentage of the people live in abject poverty. He charged the new Chairmen and members of the Committee to look into areas like roads, primary education, healthcare, sanitation and refuse collection in the markets.
The Governor urged them to hit the ground running, saying,” you not have the luxury of time to wander. Settle down, work hard, get results and turn dreams into realities. “Do not rest on your oars; you have a bigger responsibility to the people of your local government and the State. Be open, accessible, transparent, result oriented and forward looking in line with our building our future together agenda”, he advised.
He said the Committees were constituted to return confidence to the third tiers of government in the State, advising that as the closest to the people, they should focus on providing security and other welfare services to the people.
“This administration is determined to ensure that development gets to the grassroots, hence the local governments must have the right type of leadership. We are gathered here to give a sense and responsibility to another crop of leaders that the grassroots deserve”, he said.
In his opening remark, the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon. Afolabi Afuape, opined that their appointment was the most important made so far by the Goverrnor, as they are the closest to the people are the grassroots. Afuape noted that for the people to feel their impact, the Chairmen and the Committee members must put in their best and replicate some of the State’s programmes in their local government areas, adding that all eyes were on them to perform.
Responding on behalf of others, the Transition Committee Chairman, Odeda Local Government Area, Hon. Semiu Bola Lawal, pledged to serve the people diligently and ensure that they get the best in their respective local government areas.