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Uduaghan asks council chairmen to tap other revenue sources


Asaba- Gov. Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta on Thursday asked council chairmen to explore other ways of increasing their Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in the face of falling oil prices.
Uduaghan gave the task in Asaba at a Two-day Orientation for newly sworn-in Chairmen, Heads of Personnel Management and Treasurers of the 25 local government areas of the State.
The governor urged the Federal Government to either increase the councils’ allocations or remove the burden of paying primary school teachers from the councils.
He said the drop in oil revenues informed the state agenda of Delta beyond Oil.
He added that with the dwindling revenues, the councils had more challenges to contend with in addition to paying primary school teachers.
“The falling oil prices and the dwindling resources is really a warning that you should not depend so much on revenue from the Federal Allocation in Abuja.
“You must find ways of increasing our revenues through other sources.
“There are only two ways the councils can be held accountable to the people. One is for the federal government to remove the payment of primary schools teachers’ salaries from them.
“Secondly is to increase the councils’ allocation to adequately accommodate the teachers’ salaries,” he said.
He said the state government parts with about N600 million monthly to augment the primary schools teachers’ salaries.
He added that the councils spend about 70 per cent of their allocation on payment of teachers’ salaries.
The governor said with the rate at which wages were being increased, the councils might find it difficult to pay their workers’ salaries.
He, however, charged the council chairmen to ensure security and environmental sanitation in their areas to ensure that the entire state experienced peace, security and good health.
Dr Ben Iwezu, the Commissioner for Local Government Affairs, thanked the governor for organising the workshop in line with the state’s human capital development agenda,
Iwezu said the councils were the platform for ensuring development at the grassroots, adding that the workshop was apt and aimed at building their capacity to deliver good governance to the people.
Mr Olumami Oyibo, Chairman, Local Government Service Commission (LGSC), urged the participants to take the workshop seriously in order to deliver development to the people.
Oyibo, represented by Mr Paul Uwechue, LGSC’s First Commissioner, said the topics for discussion were vital to the participants and would be delivered by seasoned lecturers.
“I, therefore, challenge you to utilise the knowledge acquired to improve the various councils and areas”, he said.
The theme of the workshop is “Understanding the Principles and Practice of Local Government for Enhanced Service Delivery.’’ (NAN)

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