FCT minister charges council chairmen on resource management
THE Federal Capital Territory, Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, has charged the Chairmen of the FCT Area Councils to be prudent in the management of funds and resources made available to them.
He has also called for good working relationship between the council chairmen and their councillors in order to ensure speedy development in the territory.
Bello, spoke when the Speakers’ Forum of the FCT Area Council legislative houses paid him a courtesy visit.
He said: “It is very important for you to give maximum support and cooperation to your chairmen because, as a popular Nigerian proverb says, ‘one hand cannot clap’. So, no matter what people tell you, know that one hand cannot clap.
“If you want progress, you have to cooperate very closely with your chairmen. Support them, discuss with them, cooperate with them and, by the grace of God, you will find out everything will go smoothly,” he said.
The minister said he had warned the council chairmen to ensure judicious utilisation of resources at their disposal and urged the lawmakers to also give support in that direction particularly now that the country is trying to move out of the economic recession.
He said: “Like as we told you here, one kobo of Area Council money, I told them don’t touch. Everything goes to the Area Councils. When I read in the papers, I see that it doesn’t happen like that in so many parts of the country”.
He urged the councillors to support their chairmen in various areas of development especially on environmental sanitation.
The Minister urged the visiting councillors to take more than a cursory interest in the education of their constituents saying, saying as councillors, go to the primary schools to make sure the teachers are there, even if it is under a tree that they are reading, make sure they are teaching them something.
“Of course, there are many good dedicated teachers, but you have to check and see it. The same with health centres. If it is a nurse or midwife posted to the primary healthcare centre, make sure that the woman or the man is always there. This is the way you can bring change to your localities.
In keeping with the need for transparency, the minister reiterated his directive that all allocations to the Area Councils be published in the administration’s newspaper, Abuja Digest.
Acting Secretary, Area Council Services Secretariat, Architect Joshua Kaura, noted that FCT Administration has been diligent to ensure that Area Councils were working.
He said the administration had continued with the policy of releasing 100 per cent of all Area Council allocations as well as ensuring that the 10 per cent of the FCT Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) that went to the Area Councils were shared during joint allocation meeting.
He urged the councillors to work with the chairmen to harness the various sources of IGR in their Area Councils to ensure availability of funds for development purposes.
Earlier, the Leader of the Speakers’ Forum, Honourable Daniel Shanyibwa Michael, said they visited the FCT Minister to convey their appreciation to him for the able way he was piloting the affairs of FCT as both a father and a leader.
He also conveyed the felicitations of the councillors on the safe return of Mr President, Muhammadu Buhari to the country, after his medical leave in London.