The Kaduna State Government has finally implemented the recommendations of the committee it set up to review the number of district and village heads in the state.
With the implementation, 4,766 district and village heads will be dropped as the state government said it would now recognize only the 77 districts and 1,429 villages that existed prior to 2001.
The number of districts increased to 390 with the 313 created while village units increased to 5,882.
The state Commissioner for Local Governments, Alhaji Jafaru Sani, who disclosed this at a press conference, said the restructuring was to reduce the burden that a bloated payroll imposed on local government councils.
The government said it had consulted the state Council of Chiefs which had endorsed the restructuring of districts.
The commissioner said the creation of more districts from 2001 increased the number of district heads along with increased personnel in the district offices which added more than 2,700 employees to the payroll of the local government councils.
The commissioner said the restructuring however would not affect the 32 emirs and chiefs in the state.
“It is the duty of the state government to pay the salaries and allowances of all the 32 chiefs. And the state government shall continue to be responsible for all our graded chiefs,” he said, adding that while the state government had been discharging its obligations to the 32 chiefs, the local government councils were not able to do the same for their district heads.
Before 2001, Kaduna State had only 77 districts and 1,429 village units. The six oldest first class emirates and chiefdoms had 37 districts, which ballooned to 152 districts after 2001.
He said government had not seen any objective criteria or a strategic consideration that concluded that the proliferation of districts was either sustainable or crucial to delivering public goods or promoting harmony at the grassroots.