Stakeholders in the local government system on Saturday in Lagos advocated 30 per cent revenue allocation for local governments by the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).
The stakeholders were reacting to a proposal by the RMAFC on the new revenue-sharing formula for the country, with 20.6 per cent proposed for the local governments.
Speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), a good number of the stakeholders said 20.6 per cent would further hinder the third tier of government from performing its role.
Mr Rotimi Agunsoye, a former Lagos State Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, advocated for 30 per cent for the local governments.
“I want to state categorically that the review of the revenue allocation formula to 20.6 per cent is not acceptable at all. What can 20.6 per cent do?
“They should give 30 per cent of the revenue to local governments. I know what goes on at the grassroots.
“If the local governments are to perform to expectations, power and funds should be given to them because they are supposed to bring the dividends of democracy to the people,” he said.
The former commissioner however decried the treatment being meted out to the local governments, saying they were not being treated as the third tier of government.
“Even with the little funds being allocated to the local governments, I will tell you that they are still doing their best.
“From my own perspective, they are not treated as the third tier, especially in the area of revenue allocation,” he said.
Alhaja Nourat Babs-Olorunkemi, a former council chairman in the Amuwo-Odofin Local Government Area (LGA), disagreed with the 20.6 per cent.
“Only an increase in revenue will make the grassroots government perform better.
“We all know that the local government is the closest to the people and they know where it hurts the people most.
“I will suggest that there should be an increase in their revenue. They have a lot of projects to do, but lack of funds is hindering them,” she said.
The former council chairman suggested that the bank accounts of the local governments should be separated from those of the state governments, saying they deserve an autonomy.
“The control by the state government is another issue hindering the local governments. Any allocation given to the local government should go straight into its account,” she said.