Despite NFIU warnings, Zamfara government withholds allocation of local government councils

The Zamfara State government, under the leadership of governor Bello Matawalle, is now at loggerheads with chairmen of the 14 local government councils in the state over the non-release of federal allocations to the local governments for this month.

Speaking to newsmen in Gusau on Monday, the spokesman for the 14 local governments’ chairmen, Ahmed Maradun, said they would not comply with what the state government wanted to do with their federal allocations.

He noted that the constitution has stipulated that local governments’ statutory allocations should go directly to local governments’ chairmen.

According to Maradun, when the allocation for this month was released from the federation account, the Zamfara State Government directed that each local government would be given the sum of N5m each while the balance would be withheld by the state government.

“Our thinking was that the state government would abide by the constitutional provision and allow our money to come directly to our accounts but very unfortunately, the state government is holding our money.”

He argued that the state government had no right to hold their federal allocations since the joint accounts formula had been scrapped.

“We will sue the governor to court for violating the constitutional provision of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for ignoring the new provision.”

He wondered why a local government chairman whose local government had been allocated over N80m from the federation account would be given only N5m.

Reacting, the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the governor, Alhaji Zailani Bappa, said, “We will not say anything now since most of the correspondents have filed their reports. We shall surely react to their allegations as soon as the stories are published.”

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