We Need 6 Billion Naira To Conduct Local Government Election, Says Cross River Government

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By Our Reporter

Austin Ibok, SA Interparty Affairs to Governor Ayade
Austin Ibok, SA Interparty Affairs to Governor Ayade

The Special Adviser Inter Party Affairs to Senator Ben Ayade, Cross River State Governor, Mr. Austin Ibok has stated that the State Government requires a minimum of six billion naira for it to conduct Local Government election and that as a result of unavailability of funds, that has delayed the election and the Government is aiming at constituting a transition committee.

Ibok stated this while speaking on a radio program “The Dialogue with Agba Jalingo” on Hit 95.9 FM Calabar and monitored by our reporter.

The SA added that outside the money needed for the conduct of the elections, Local Government Chairmen and Chairpersons and some of their political appointees are entitled to some form of allowances upon leaving office and that will leave a huge gap in the State’s purse.

His words, “For you to conduct the Local Government election you need like 2 billion. Don’t also forget that the current Local Government Chairmen, Vice Chairmen, Councillors and political appointees, immediately their tenure elapse that they would leave office and for them to also leave office you have to give them severance if I am not mistaken”.

“If they do the statistics, the least number of elected and political appointees will be 47 in any Local Government if I am not mistaken. For you to take care of those bills after leaving office you will have to spend like another 2 billion naira.

“Don’t also forget that the conduct of Local Government elections has always been a norm, even if it is not constitutional that when Local Government Chairmen, Vice Chairmen and Councilors are elected the State Government buys them cars. If you want to calculate that also it will cost another 2 billion Naira. So the total aspect of it is 6 billion naira”.

Mr. Ibok, a former Chairman of the Labor Party in the state also stated that his office has communicated these reasons to the various political parties in the State and that the Cross River State Independent Electoral Commission (CROSIEC) had through his office held meetings with political parties to that effect.

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