By Ahmed Taofeek
The Local Government also referred to as the third tier of Government remains incontestably the closest to the people as it has over the years, served as a vehicle through which other tiers of government- the Federal and State, administer their programmes and policies.
The Local Government also by far, is the standard avenue for determining the successes or otherwise of government projects and by extension, exploits of international organisations and other donor and interventions agencies, geared towards improving the living condition of the people.
Nigeria, operating a Federal system of government with 36 States, 774 Local Government and a Federal Capital Territory as components units with the view to bringing government and governance closer to the people, no doubt, recognizes the importance of this system of administration and governance as proper channel of command are put in place comprising the Chairman as head, assisted by supervisors and Councilors.
It therefore follows that the system of electing representative of the people at the grassroots should as a matter of necessity; interest every one for so many reasons.
Election at this level is used to measure the level of preparedness of the Electoral umpires, Security Agencies, Independent Observers and other stakeholders. It is in the light of this that the forth coming Local Council election in Ogun State should not just interest everyone, but should also provoke participation across all levels.
With the inauguration of the Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission’s Committee (OGSIEC) by Governor Dapo Abiodun on Thursday, 18th March 2021, consisting of a Legal green horn, Bababtunde Osibodu as Chairman, Olatunji Akoni, Tajudeen Omolaja, Ayodele Bankole, Gbemi Onansanya and Remilekun Olaopa; certainly, the coast is now clear that the much anticipated Local Council polls will in no distant time, hold.
This underscores why stakeholders must contribute their quota with a view to making the entire process seamless.
For instance, the charge by the Governor shortly after inaugurating the Committee that, “election is not just an aspect of democracy, it is an integral part of norms and values of the modern world political civilization.
Little wonder that the absence of transparent, free, fair elections have become one of the elements of instability in the society.
Therefore, a credible election is generally accepted as a consent of the people to be governed willingly by those whom they have elected as only real democracy can move our nation forward towards progress, and earn her the respect she deserves”
Drawing inspiration from the postulations of the Ogun State helmsman, it will not be out of place to counsel major stakeholders in this just course to immediately assume their responsibilities towards the success of this very important democratic process.
To start with, there is the need for the National Orientation Agency (NOA) to swing into action in order to conscientise re-orientate the people, most especially those at the grassroots on the need to embrace the process and be actively involved in instituting acceptable leadership to the people.