The major Problem With Nigerian Politicians and the Nigerian Political Parties.
There is a problem with Nigerian Politicians and the Nigerian political parties.
Someone argued that dictatorship is the best form of governance in a Muslim country. The person went ahead to say that democracy will not be useful in a Muslim world because they are best governed with an iron hand and that an average Muslim has the tendency to restore to violence as a way of solving a problem. Moreover, some Islamic religious punishment and laws may not entirely be successful in a standard democratic setting. Although, it is alleged that majority of Nigerians are Muslim Nigeria is not considered an Islamic nation because Nigeria is a nation comprised of different social-cultural and ethnic-religious people.
Nigeria, as a nation, has witnessed the horrors of civil war, military rule and dictatorship. Unfortunately, even after some years of caricature democracy, pioneered by the same cabals who dictated the affairs of the nation under the military regime, Nigerians are yet to enjoy any benefit of the civil rule. The slogan “we are a young democracy, and we are still learning” still remains the excuse of the Nigerian politicians. The best way to judge a nation is not by her democratic age but by what she achieved at her age and the hope for her future achievements. For instance, some countries have enjoyed over 50-100 years of democracy and while we cannot compare Nigeria to such nations but we can compare what they achieved after 19 years of civilian rule. What has Nigeria achieved after 19 years of democracy?
It is important to recall that this is not the first era of democracy in Nigeria. The early period failed because of the military coup which returned the nation to where it started. Even though some Nigerians still believe that the country was economically better under military regime than the current democracy they have witnessed. Notably, under Gen Sani Abacha’s administration in which Nigeria, is said, did not depend on any external loan and her currency was stronger than today.
Gen. Sani Abacha looted billions of naira despite the economic achievements attributed to him. It is a fact that Abacha’s loot was made headline because he rejected the handover call and died in office unlike other Heads of state who did the same and are still alive to enjoy their loot. The currently Nigerian politicians, most of whom are former military men, are not different from the dictators of the past. They prove to be untouchable and powerful because of their military connection or their godfather. Consequently, corruption, abuse of office/power and looting of public fund is still the norm in a democratic Nigerian Government and any attempt to recover the loots or fight corruption is termed “political persecution”. What is the meaning of democracy if elected public officers can readily steal and go unpunished? How can they protect the interest of the people when they are too powerful to be questioned?
The idea of a political party is to bring together men and women who share the same political ideology under the same political platform for a common purpose. It can rightly be said that there is nowhere in the world that the political party system has been abused and misused as in Nigeria. Since the new era of democracy, Nigerians have witness politician jumping from one party to another like child’s play. It is usually the case whenever an election is around the corner. Some people claim that the defection from one political party to another is to avoid persecution. Is there need to fear persecution in a democratic system of Government? Moreover, those who fear persecution are usually those who have skeletons in their cupboard.
The movement from one political party to another proves that the Nigerian political parties lack focus and ideology. That is a political party should know what it stands for and what it wants to achieve/implement in a country. That is why people look at the founding fathers of any political party and their vision/mission. Consequently, those who do not share in a party’s ideology should have no business in the party. Funny enough, each time the Nigerian politicians move they blame their party for the failure in leadership of the nation. They go over to another party only to repeat the same process and make the same excuse. The circle of movement and reason continues. Lo! How long must Nigerians be fooled and deceived?
It is easy for people to disagree but it is expected that politicians should put the interest of the people first before their personal benefit. Some of the politicians try to divide the nation along ethnic and religious lines. Does it matter who gives you what you want in life as long as it adds no sorrow to it, be it God or the Devil? It then follows that if the Nigerian leaders can deliver the dividends of democracy, her citizens will not bother the religious or ethnic group of the leaders. That is why the developed nations are doing better than the developing countries whose growth has been stunted by the myopic politicians who fail to see beyond their personal interests. Secondly, if the politicians should listen to the leaders of their party, then they should ensure that such leaders are men/women of specific character before joining the party.
It means that until Nigerian politicians start taking the blame for their failure as a party and learn to align themselves with a political party that shares in their political ideology, Nigeria will not move forward. That is why Nigerians keep recycling the same governmental waste and keep producing the same result. The Nigerian democratic system has witnessed a series of killings greater than that seen during military rule in Nigeria. The massacre ranged from Niger Delta Militants to Boko Haram to Herdsmen killings yet no single democratic government has placed a desirable value on human lives and properties. Some people claim that the killings are politically motivated which confirms the insensitivity attributed to those in political office. The major problem with the Nigerian political parties is that they spend more time working and fighting on how to bring down an opposition party than on how to work together for the collective interest of all Nigerians.
A goat is still a goat even if you change its clothing. It is this type of political foolishness that can cause a revolution in countries were the youths have the willpower to come out and take what belongs to them. But most Nigeria youths have sold their birthright for a pottage of yam. That is why the Nigerian voters/youth collect money from the politicians to vote for them or help them rig the election. The 2018 Ekiti State Governorship election took the headline because of the evident buying of votes by the political parties. However, there are still some youths who want to bring in the desired change. Someday with determination and persistence, their dream will come to be if they do not give up, although they may be a few.