Assembly passes Anambra electoral commission bill, demands LG poll

Assembly passes Anambra electoral commission bill, demands LG poll

On Wednesday, the Anambra State House of Assembly approved a measure creating the Anambra State Independent Electoral Commission and addressing related issues.

Assembly passes Anambra electoral commission bill, demands LG poll

On Tuesday, May 28, the executive bill passed a second reading after numerous legislators offered comments regarding the plan’s benefits and significance for the state’s local government election process.

Once the governor has given his approval, the election law will go into force on June 5, 2024.

The state House of Assembly’s plenary, chaired by Speaker Somtochukwu Udeze, on Wednesday saw the lawmakers refer a bill to the Committee of the Whole, where they took turns going over the text, clause by clause, and making the necessary corrections and amendments.

While updating the group on their progress, Udeze complimented the members for taking the time to do the right thing and for helping to create a better Anambra State.

“The bill will lay the foundation for the executive arm to take steps towards the conduct of local government elections in the state when the governor signs it,” he stated.

The House postponed the session to Tuesday, June 4, 2024, in order to continue its legislative work.

The measure, according to Deputy Speaker Chukwuma Okoye, will let the governor hold local government elections, which will lead to more development throughout the state’s 21 local government regions.

“The state governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, has proven to be different from other politicians by promising and taking necessary steps towards conducting the grassroots election which has not been done in the state for a long period,” stated Okoye, who represents Awka South Constituency 2.

In Anambra State, local government elections have not taken place for more than a decade. The most recent one took place in 2014, towards the end of former Governor Peter Obi’s term.

The 21 Local Government Areas (LGAs) in the state have been constantly governed by caretaker transition chairman, chosen every three months by the state governor, despite strong opposition from opposition camps.

Assembly passes Anambra electoral commission bill, demands LG poll

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission was instructed last week by an Abuja-based High Court to contact and question pertinent Anambra State Government officials about the disbursement of cash received between March 22, 2022, and April 30, 2024.

While it considered a lawsuit that was filed before it, the court prohibited the state’s 21 LGAs from getting any money from the combined revenue pools.

The Accountant-General of the Federation and the Minister of Finance were prohibited from sending money from the federation account to the 21 LGAs of Anambra State by the decision rendered by Justice Bello Kawo.

Additionally, it directed the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to look into how the state government of Anambra used and distributed cash that accrued to the LGAs between March 2022 and April 2024.

The orders came after Mr. Chukwuebuka Mmeni, a lawyer, filed an ex parte application.

Source: The Punch

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