Delta gets new Electoral Act

Zenith

… As Okowa Signs DSIEC, other bills into law

Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, has signed into law the Delta State Independent National Electoral Commission (DSIEC) Bill.

The Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly, Sheriff Oborevwori, accompanied by his Deputy, Friday Osanebi; Clark of the House, Mrs Lyna Ochulor, and other principal officers of the legislature had presented the bill with two other bills, the Local Government Amendment Bill (2017) and the Administration of Criminal Justice Bill (2016), to the governor for assent at Government House, Asaba.

Governor Okowa at the occasion, which was witnessed by some members of the state executive council, said, “The signing into law of the DSIEC Bill 2017 is very important at this point in time. The law will strengthen the activities of the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission and I believe that with this action, members of the Commission will be appointed to take office for the smooth conduct of the local government elections.”

The governor, who lauded the vibrancy and cooperation of the Delta State legislators in making laws that will ensure good governance, respect for rule of law and progressive society, stated that his administration would continue to support local government councils to offset their salary arrears.

The governor also disclosed that some of the local government councils are heavily indebted to their staff as a result of having a lot of teachers and employees. He however noted that there were some local government councils in the state that were not owing salary arrears.

He said that efforts were on to ensure that only genuine workers earn salaries and called on the Unions in the councils to support the ongoing biometric exercise to weed out ghost workers from the system.

“We will continue to support the local government councils for them to pay salaries; allocation to local government councils is very low which has made some of them to find it difficult to pay salaries,” he said.

He added, “There are councils that are not owing salaries because their wage bill is low. I am aware that some councils have paid salaries up to date and we are working hard to ensure that only those who work are paid as there are many ghost workers.”

The governor stressed that the essence of biometrics system introduced in the local government councils was to ensure that those who were fraudulently receiving salaries are fished out and removed from the pay roll to enable the councils have more money to pay their staff salaries.

Rt. Hon. Oborovweri had told the governor that the bills were passed through the rigourous process of different committees of the legislature, disclosing that it was a thing of joy that Delta State was among the very few that have passed the Administration of Criminal Justice Bill into law.

Meanwhile, Delta State Governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, has bagged the highest national award of the University of Ibadan Alumni Association, The Alumni of the Year Award, using the occasion to call for private sponsorship for research.

Okowa after receiving the award at the University of Ibadan on August 16, 2017, stated that universities were known for research works and private individuals, corporate organisations should complement government efforts by sponsoring research works.

"I feel very elated coming back to my roots and be honoured with the award. We should take research in our universities serious. Individuals and organisations should support government by sponsoring research in fields that will encourage us," the governor said.