From Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Former Ogun State governor and the All Progressives Congress (APC) senatorial candidate for Ogun East in 2023, Gbenga Daniel, has declared that without autonomy of the local governments, the needed development would continue to elude the grassroots.
Daniel equally noted that if the local governments are unable to enjoy financial autonomy and take steps to improve the lives of the people at the grassroots, the socio-economic fortunes of rural Nigerians would continue to remain poor.
He, however, pledged to push for the autonomy of local governments in Nigeria to enhance their capacity to deliver quality and effective governance at the grassroots, if he is elected as senator come next year.
Daniel, who stated this while speaking at Atan, the headquarters of Ijebu North Local Government Area, as part of his familiarization tour of the nine local government areas that make up Ogun East, also empowered the residents of Ijebu North East with sewing machines, grinding machines, cars, tractors among other items.
Scholarships were also given to ten indigent students with each of them getting a cheque of N100,000 each.
The former governor recalled that he was able to establish a healthcare facility in Atan when he was a governor between 2003 and 2011, pledging to convey the deplorable state of roads in the area to the appropriate quarters when he is elected to the National Assembly.
While seeking the support of the people of the local government for his senatorial ambition, Daniel said the job of a lawmaker is to facilitate Federal Government projects in senatorial districts and use the law-making process to bring about quality governance.
“In the last one week, we have been in this local government, we have toured all the nooks and crannies of this local government, we know what is happening here, we understand the condition of the roads, which is a big challenge and I want to assure you, we will let the power that be know, and I am sure that something will be done very very soon.
“The works of a senator are different from that of a governor. We want to go to Abuja and make laws, but senators and governors and presidents must work together. So I want to plead that this election, it’s not about OGD alone, but all the APC candidates.
“Part of the problems we have in many states today is the issue of local government autonomy, and part of what we want to go and fight is that local government resources should be given to the local government.
“Without the local government being properly empowered and funded, nothing can happen, and that is what I think is very important that we are going to do”. The former governor stated.