For decades, there have been a lot of complaints about the performance of local governments in terms of the quality of service delivery and the level of impacts of such services to the people at the grassroots level. The problem may be attributed to low level of autonomy enjoyed by the local governments, over the year or due to political and administrative control of the Local Government Council by the State Government through ministry for Local Government as well as Local Government Service Commission. The concern of the study is, to examine the extent to which Kaduna-south and Zaria Local Governments provide essential services for the promotion of socioeconomic conditions of the people between the periods of 2004-2015.The study adopted service delivery theory, which helped in explaining the quality of service delivery in

Kaduna-south and Zaria Local Governments of Kaduna State. Yamane‟s formula was used in the determination of sample size of the study. Multi-stage sampling technique was adopted in which cluster, purposive and proportional sampling was used. The primary data for the study were sourced through questionnaire and unstructured interview while secondary data were gathered from official publications including relevant documents on socio-economic activities from Information Units, Finance and Supplies, and Works, Transport, Housing and Survey Departments of the two local governments, federal monthly allocations covering the periods 2004-2015, relevant Sections (Forth Schedule) in the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Data were presented and analysed through Tables and the use of Chi-square statistical tools in testing the research hypotheses. The study revealed that there is no full autonomy in local government of Kaduna State and the performance of these local governments is very low, although Zaria Local Government performed better in the provision of local service delivery than that of Kaduna-south, for the period under study. The study recommended among other things that, State and local government joint-account should be abolished; local governments should be given full autonomy so as to be able to improve their performance in the delivery of quality services to their communities.



1.1  Background to the Study

Local Governments in many countries of the world are regarded as competent unit of government that can access the needs of local dwellers, mobilize and harness local resources with the help of local talents and support of the State and/or central government. A modern local government is expected to play the role of promoting the democratic ideals of a society and coordination of development programmes at grassroots level. It mobilizes popular support and participation in developments; initiates local projects and resolves competing claims, over resources through planning and budgeting. It helps greatly in collecting vital data which can be used in preparing development programmes for State and Federal levels of government; it also helps to cultivate the spirit of self-determination in the mind of people. 

Central governments of many countries are relying increasingly on local governments to perform services related to economic and social development. New systems of local government are being introduced in many countries of the world especially (Asia and Africa) with a view to increasing the contributions of local government to economic and social development programmes (Omar, 1999). Essentially, local government is created for developmental purposes which include national integration, economic and social development, and development of the human and other resources. Development is the function that has been obvious in the theories of local government. 

This implies that local government is a reliable and dependable vehicle of development. According to Omar (1999), it is understandable that central government in many countries should wish to involve local government in accelerating development. Local governments are closest to the people at grassroots and so should have intimate knowledge of people‟s needs, problems and potentials. As local governments increase in competence and resource-base, they are used to reduce congestion of responsibility in the central government, thereby enabling national agencies to concentrate on overall developments measures. In urban areas in particular, local governments are often expected to provide the basic infrastructure for social and economic development. Local government serve to increase the participation of people in administration of services, thereby facilitating the adoption of programmed to local conditions and needs and gaining acceptance of such programmed by the people. Local governments can through taxation and other sources of revenues, increase finances available for development. Local government can contribute towards national integration by serving as instruments for associating people with national development programmed and by providing a training ground for national leaders of the future.