Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Was the Hue and Cry for us?


Each time I read or heard all this anti third term hues and cries about what alledged third term ambition of President Obasanjo will have on the nation, I always pause to ponder if indeed all the hues and cries are for the masses other than the selfish interest of those criers. All the shouts by Abia State Governor attacking the President on his alleged third term ambition, was it because he love the masses that much or because he wanted to contest the presidency? All the recent outburst of Vice President, was it because he wanted to take Nigeria to a higher height or was it because of his selfish interest -i.e to be the president. What about all those supporting the third term, was it because they really wanted Baba to continue his seeming good works or because they stand to retain their position or that of those closed to them?
To me this are the scenarios Naijas should take a look at, when we are arguing about this third term agenda. I said it before, and I stood by it that, those Politicians had nothing to offer us the masses, Nigerians are known to always be on the side of whatever will profit them, either of the two sides have their selfish reasons for supporting either side.
Therefore, the masses should think deeply and assess the whole matter from this point of view. Are the struggle for either side for the sake of masses? NO is the answer. In so far as No, is the answer, let Baba continue until thy Kingdom come. He is there already, and he is seeing doing some things above average, the devil we know is better than the one we dont know.
Pause and ponder, was the Hues and cries of those politicians for us? If it is not, we are not practising the true democracy of the west, then, dont force democracy of the west on us, let us practice our own democracy by amending the constitution to allow Baba to continue until he die for us.

1 comment:

Chippla Vandu said...

Hi,

Interesting post. You do make a point, which I somewhat agree with. Pro third-term and anti third-term supporters generally get to look at what they can benefit before deciding in which camp to belong. However, not everyone falls into this category. I believe that Mr. Obasanjo should leave in 2007, not because I have something to gain from whoever may succeed him but because it would set a precedent that could eventually usher in an era of stable political succession in Nigeria. Political stability in a nation as large as Nigeria is a sine qua non for economic development.

Personally, I have no faith in politicians but we are stuck in a world in which democratic systems are such that they give rise to a political class that governs society. I do not see democracy as being Western, any more than I think mathematics, science and technology are Western. Freedom and democracy are values that all humans (and animals) aspire towards. Modern democracies are built upon the three tier judicial, executive and legislative arms of government. The reason for this is simple—to prevent one individual from amassing too much power. Power corrupts an individual and the Americans appear to have realized this about two hundred and fifty years ago. That is why they were able to create the most advanced form of government (which had its ills anyway—slavery, discrimination) anywhere in the world. And it paid off. America is the most innovative society in the world today.

Now, I see more harm in Obasanjo staying beyond 2007 than if he chooses to leave. People often say it is good for Obasanjo to stay because he would be able to continue with his economic reform programs as well as prevent some bad eggs (the Atikus and Babangidas) from ruling Nigeria. Good point I would say, but one that is built on what I consider to be a false premise. I really could not care less about who succeeds Mr. Obasanjo if I pretty much knew that the person would be out of office in 8 years time. We need to think beyond the present, we need to think into the future.

Altering the constitution for the benefit of one man is a dangerous trend. What if in 2011, a sickly Mr. Obasanjo chooses to stay for a fourth-term? Constitutions exist to be respected and can be modified, but not for the greedy aspirations of politicians. The constitution is the most holy book in a republic and that is what sets most African nations apart from Western democracies. In most African nations (leaving out the economically and politically advanced nations of Southern Africa) the written word is as worthless as the piece of paper on which it is written. In Western democracies, the written word holds sway.

The earlier Nigeria sorted out the issue of political succession, the better it would be for it. Given the complex ethnic make up of Nigeria it is imperative that it attempts to sort it out now. In this regard, Obasanjo needs to leave in 2007.

I wish more Nigerians were educated. It is only with education that people can become engaged in fruitful debates. Most Nigerians are illiterate and thus too daft to comprehend the complexities of what goes on around them. This is quite unfortunate. These are the ones one never gets to hear from, because though making up the bulk of the population, illiteracy means that they have outsourced their entire lives to village heads, traditional rulers and politicians!

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