"Why Local Councils are Struggling"
Micah Jibah, chairman, Abuja Municipality Council, AMAC, explains to Nicholas Uwerunonye and Samuel Torlumun the complexities of running the country’s local governments as he looks forward to the March 16 council polls
How have you been coping with the pressure of running a municipality like AMAC?
As I always say, this is not my first time in politics. I started from the grassroots as a councillor in Garki ward under AMAC. Indeed, I was a councillor for eight years before I became the executive chairman of AMAC.
What would you say has been your biggest challenge?
The biggest challenge I can say so far is the financial aspect. I want to tell you that in the year 2011, I was in South Africa. That same year I went to Kenya and I had the opportunity to visit Malaysia in 2012. I saw a lot of things in these countries mentioned. The kind of projects city councils (local councils) of South Africa embark upon can be compared to what a state does in Nigeria. You will be surprised to know that the city council of South Africa is handling heavy construction projects. Roads, bridges and others are being handled by the city council. You can’t see dirt in South Africa. The same thing is applicable to Kenya. When I saw all these things, I said if God gives me the wisdom I would replicate the same in AMAC. In fact, from the countries I have visited their pattern of administration is almost the same. I think if I can be a chairman of AMAC for three to four years with the experience I have had I would change the lives of the people in AMAC.