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Thursday, June 11, 2020


Rt. Hon. (Atuekong) Nse Essien

The Deputy Chief Whip and Member representing ONNA State Constituency in the 7th Akwa Ibom State House of  Assembly has stated that the delays by some Local Government Councils to present their 2020 budget estimate could affect socio-economic development in the grassroots.

Nse Essien noted with very serious concern and dismay that the second quarter of 2020 financial year will elaspe soon and most local government areas in the state are yet to pass their annual budget.
This was contained in a motion by the lawmaker brought pursuant to order 111 (Three)  Rule 1 (One)  of the Standing orders of Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly (6th Edition) during Wednesday 10th June, 2020 plenary.
The motion which was titeld "Urgent demand for immediate passage of 2020 budget at the Local Government Council of Akwa Ibom State".

Hon. Essien said that the functions of a Local Government Council in state development as enshrined in the fourth schedule of the 1999 constitution as amended should be legally implemented in order to drive home development and on time.

The lawmaker said the Governor had earlier directed all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government to sent in their estimate for 2021 budget, urging all local Government  Councils to imbibe the proactive and assiduous nature of His Excellency Deacon Udom Emmanuel, whom he said has remained consistent and focused in bringing governance to the grassroots through prudent fund management and implementation of projects.

He commended the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Aniekan Bassey, for his selfless style of leadership and ensuring peaceful and harmonious coexistence amongst members of the State Legislature.
"Speaker Aniakan Bassey has rare humility. He is one leader the 7th Assembly carefully elected and ever since his emergence, we have not had any regret" Hon. Essien said.

The two term ranking lawmaker who  cited sub-section 28(1) (a) (b) of the Akwa Ibom State Local Government Administration Law, 2017 as amended maintained that "The functions and powers of a Legislative Council include; debating, approving and amending the annual budget of the Council, venting and monitoring the implementation of projects, programmes in the annual budget of the local government".

Essien whose impressive record as Chairman House Committee on Security, Youth and Sports has endeared him to many, emphasized that the above acts if not immediately checked, could negatively affect the smooth functioning of the third tier of government.

He urged all Local Government Councils in the state to as a matter of urgency pass the LGC budget for the year 2020 on or before the 30th day of June 2020.

Meanwhile,  the motion was referred to the Committee on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs chaired by the Member representing Nsit Atai, Rt. Hon. Mark Esset, to ensure proper compliance and report back to the House.

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