Members of the staff of the Ondo State House of Assembly under the umbrella of Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria, PASAN have embarked on an indefinite strike over non-implementation of Legislative Financial Autonomy.
The move, according to a report by Prompt News online newspaper, was a sequel to the failure of the Executive Arm of Government to address their demands after 21 days ultimatum.
The Entrance of Ondo State House of Assembly under lock and key as a result of Nationwide indefinite strike of the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN) over failure to implement legislative financial autonomy by concerned authorities.
Members of the Association who were resolute in their demands staged a peaceful work at the Assembly axis carrying placards with various inscriptions chanting solidarity songs.
Chairman of PASAN in Ondo State, Mrs Omolola Olufemi, said the move is in compliance with the national directive following the failure of the government to address the demand for Financial Autonomy and Welfare Package for Legislative staff.
Mrs Olufemi noted that financial autonomy is crucial to the growth of the legislature said Association had given government enough time to implement the financial autonomy following the suspension of the strike two years ago.
According to her, “You could recall that the bedrock of Parliamentary Autonomy hinges on Financial Independence. Autonomy in this context is simply defined as non-dependence and non-subordination of Parliaments in relation to the Executive.
“The Parliaments should have equitable access to resources”. As such, Parliaments by Constitutional arrangements are supposed to have enough financial muscle to carry out their legislative mandate, including exercising power over the budget.
Also, the PASAN National Ex-Officio, Mr Olumide Tapere, said that Parliaments should assert their role as a Separate Arm of Government and be independent of the Executive in the way they organise themselves.
“There are no two ways to it. All we are asking for is financial freedom so we can do things on our own and function well as entrenched in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria”
It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari had on May 2020 signed an executive order granting financial autonomy to the legislature across the 36 states of the country.