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Factors defining Nigerian politics

Politics in Nigeria is majorly parochial and highly defined by ethnic and religious sentiments. Every election cycle brings with it these sentiments in greater frenzied…

Politics in Nigeria is majorly parochial and highly defined by ethnic and religious sentiments. Every election cycle brings with it these sentiments in greater frenzied proportions. Politicians win or lose by taking undue advantage of both. Always exploiting the obvious fragile, weak ethnic fault lines and sensibilities of their teeming supporters is the only strategy they often apply to win. 

Mostly powered by who you know, godfatherism and illicitly acquired wealth, politics is only a game played for the benefit of a few. It is a game played by the powerful and money bags to gain power. 

Promoting ignorance and weaponising poverty among the electorate is another strategy. Many with good intentions knowing what transpires in political realm avoid the game without being told. It is a game of the strongest few and the winner takes it all. That is why Nigeria cannot boast of putting forward its best 11 in every political cycle. Nations known to play politics based on the above factors largely remain in the league of the backward.

There is no equity or fairness in Nigerian politics. A group of elitist class most often than not sit over a 40-year-old bottle of whisky to decide the fate of the entire country. The system has deliberately polarised the electorate to the point that a few naira notes shared determines where the political pendulum swings. Politicians who claim to be nationalistic are being clever by half. I think there is none at the moment. The era of patriotism and nationalism ended well before the civil war. 

Those who by virtue of their positions and are compelled by the constitution to be nationalistic in behaviour and attitude even do so grudgingly. Most times they even sideline the constitution they swear to uphold. 

One needs to understand the complexities of Nigerian politics to be able to stop silly arguments and insults with friends and families. Those who at every cycle of politicking volunteered to donate time, energy and resources in promoting failed and old politicians, hate and divisive tendencies should as a matter of fact reassess their positions. 

As the politics of who becomes the president of the senate and speaker of the house raged on, as usual they formed group interests and divided the opinion of Nigerians. It was a game of who won and the benefit of supporters of the winner – nothing more.

Our responsibility as citizens is to join hands together to defeat this class of people who have succeeded in setting the nation backward. 

The nation will move forward only when an average Nigerian realises that competency, character and capacity matter in governance. The people should also know that it is their right to demand accountability from those they gave their mandate. 

 

Sunday Onyemaechi Eze – [email protected]

 

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