Elections in Nigeria are fast approaching and it is most likely that political parties will present to the electorates same guardians who has always been there. The nature of party politics in Nigeria calls for re-examination if new and vibrant hands are to be elected into various political offices.
As it is, the two main political parties are structured in a way that allows only the favored ones to stand a chance of being selected. Talented young Nigerians find it hard to break the glass ceilings already put in place by party hierarchies and king-makers. Party politics is an anathema to the Nigerian project. Whether Nigerians like it or not, they may have to choose between two ‘devils’ or two ‘angels’ in 2019. The options are slim and so are the chances of change.
Why do the Nigerian technocrats live politics in the hands of crooks? Perhaps, this is another reason why the educated ones who are willing to make a change should become even more proactive. The nature of politics in the country requires courage and strong will. Breaking the barriers constituted by the powers that be is the first test to anyone’s resolve to make impact. Young, skillful and educated Nigerians willing to venture into politics should take a clue from revolutionary zealots through history. Men and women who seek change don’t fold their hands and wish for it.
The kind of change Nigeria deserves does not come from staying aloof but through political participation.
The diaspora community may find it extremely difficult to make meaningful contributions in the political process. Many are just onlookers who are ready to take advantage of ample business opportunities and connect with the same set of people they condemn. The reserve mentality is not good enough just as in a team, when the results are beyond control. There’s no better time than now to do the needful. While it is true that financial strength can determine to a large extent the chances of an individual, election of candidates would not have been predictable if there was active participation especially from the grassroots.
Today, many youths are carried away by Big Brother Naija and are actively involved in the show biz and entertainment industries. They have chosen to ignore politics, yet they are always at the receiving end of government ineptitude. Once again, it is the political sons and daughters of the legion of economic cankerworms that will be installed by the godfathers and so; the cycle continues.
Zuma’s Ouster: When Democracy Wins
Unlike in Nigeria, where party politics could be likened to an occult group or secret society, where the individual is accountable to the party and its king-makers than the electorates, the resignation of former South African President, Jacob Zuma is a reflection of the power of the people “to alter and replace” as envisaged by Thomas Jefferson in the American Declaration of Independence. In an ideal state, governments should be subjected to scrutiny and checks if unable to meet the yearnings and aspirations of the people.
Political parties cannot afford to take off their eyes when individuals who win elections under their platforms fail to scold their own. It boils down to a cultural default and an undesirable, anti-progressive one for that matter. This value is about placing the individual above the entire workings of the democratic system. He/she is seen as the ‘generalissimo’ and can never be questioned or brought to book. Political parties possess the power to ask a president to resign, criticize or advise a government for its ineffectiveness.
The ANC leadership had failed to address the myriad of problems faced by south Africa and of course, corruption has been a major contributing factor to the country’s ailing economy. Kudos must be given however, to some of the members of the ANC who have remained resolute in their resolve to bring normalcy to the abnormalities in Zuma’s inglorious administration. Such spirit of persistent outcry should not be seen as a form of disloyalty to the party, but its most worthy duty.