June 19, 2021

NEWS AGENCY OF NIGERIA

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Lagos attorney general advocates new revenue sharing formula

By Oluwatope Lawanson/Kunle Williams

Lagos State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo, is proposing new revenue sharing formula where 34 per cent goes to federal, 43 per cent to states, while local governments get 23 per cent.

Onigbanjo made the proposal in a memoranda to the South-West Zone Public Hearing of Senate Committee on Review of the 1999 Constitution in Lagos on Monday.

He said: “There is no federalism if there is no fiscal Federalism and as such, a situation whereby 52.68 per cent of revenue collected goes to the federal government account is not equitable, unfair and not just.”

Onigbanjo also said it was most inequitable for the federal government to take 100 per cent generated revenues/resources derived from a region or state.

According to him, the states in which these natural resources or revenue streams are found should also have equal rights to control them.

“The principle of derivation should not apply to only petroleum, any state that has a resource or where revenue is derived must also be entitled to the derivation principle.

“It must go across our revenue streams and resources,” the Lagos attorney general said.

He called for the establishment of state police which would work side by side with federal police as practised in western countries where true federalism was being practised.

According to him, state governors who are called chief security officers of the state do not have control over the commissioners of police in their states.

He said: “Each state must have control over the security of their states, and state governors must have the power to establish their own security officers being the chief security officers.”

Onigbanjo also said that states should have their own Judicial Service Commissions and be given power to appoint their own judges.

“It is wrong for the National Judicial Commisson to sit in Abuja and appoint judges for the various states.

“Each state should have their own Judicial Service Commission, they should appoint their judges and promote them.

“Also, federal and state courts should run parallel and each state can have there own appellate courts/system and only constitutional matters should go to the Supreme Court,” Onigbanjo said

Chief Magistrate Ohere Oluwatoyin, National Secretary, Association of Magistrates in Nigeria, in their memoranda, called for recognition of magistrates in the constitution as judicial officers.

The association also proposed that the retirement age of magistrates be reviewed from 60 years to 65 years.

“This will give room for us to do our work efficiently,” she said

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