A local government bill has been met with opposition from the Kwara PDP

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State has spoken out against Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq’s proposed changes to the state’s local government laws.

The party claimed that “apart from the suspicion owing to the hasty receipt and passage of the said bill by the Kwara state House of Assembly, which ought to observe due diligence in its operation,” there were also violations of the House’s standing rules and orders during the bill’s first and second readings.

At a press conference on Monday in Ilorin, PDP state chairman Babatunde Muhammed strongly criticized “the attempt to alter Section 20(1) of the local government law to increase notification of the election date by the Kwara state Independent Electoral Commission, KWASIEC, from existing 90 days to 360 days.”

Local elections would be moved to 2025 if his bill became law, he said, which would be two years before the end of the current administration’s second term.

The party sought the immediate suspension of a measure it called “anti-democratic” and “designed to further cripple grassroots governance” by giving the governor’s illegally appointed Transition Implementation Committee chairs access to the monthly budgets of local governments.

It urged the Speaker of the House of Representatives to suspend the bill’s progress and distribute copies to all legislators so that they can provide their expertise and input that accurately reflects the wishes of their voters.

Local government area councils in the state must be made aware of all federal allocations and other cash inflows immediately, as was another requirement made by Babatunde.

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The party demanded that President Bola Tinubu and Minister of Justice Lateef Fagbemi stop funding Kwara State’s local government until certain concerns are resolved.

“Our party is worried, just like all well meaning Kwarans about the continued encroachment and usurpation of local government administrations since the inception of the Abdulrahman-led All Progressives Congress in Kwara State,” he stated.

The “Abdulrahman-led government also replaced the sacked former chairmen with his surrogates who were tagged Transition Implementation Committee, TIC, chairmen to illegally superintend local government administrations and their resources in the state,” he said, referring to the state’s failure to comply with a court order issued three years earlier.

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