Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State says his government will not oppose the implementation of financial autonomy for judiciary when a standard framework is eventually agreed upon nationwide.
Akeredolu stated this while addressing members of the state chapter of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) and officials of Judicial Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN), who protested to his office in Akure.
He said that the state could not single itself out on the issue of judiciary’s financial autonomy without inputs from other states of the federation.
The governor, therefore, pleaded with the state’s judiciary workers to exercise patience, pending the conclusion of ongoing deliberations on their demand for financial autonomy.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the governor was represented by his Deputy, Mr Lucky Aiyedatiwa at the event.
According to Akeredolu, members of the two unions are currently engaging both the state and the federal governments, with a view to finding lasting solutions to the issue.
“This is a national issue that involves all the 36 states. Ondo State cannot, at this time, single itself out. There has to be a standard framework across the states upon which it will be based.
“I can tell you that the 36 state governors are meeting on this issue and the discussion is still ongoing.
“Until the federal and state governments agree, no state can single itself out to implement this. Like I said, we are not averse to it. It is a constitutional issue and it will be resolved constitutionally,” he said.
The NBA Chairman, Akure branch, Mr Rotimi Olorunfemi, who led the protest, had earlier appealed to Akeredolu to blaze the trail on the implementation of financial autonomy for the judiciary in the state, as a former NBA National President.
NAN reports that members of JUSUN are currently embarking on nationwide industrial action to protest the non-implementation of financial autonomy for the judiciary.