In summary, political campaigns in Nigeria would be hitch-free if the following measures are taken, each candidate going out for rally should not hire thugs, if it is a must then he or she must involve his loved ones; youths should stop political thuggery as there is nothing good in it.
It is a norm in every democratic setting that candidates that emerged victorious after political parties’ primary elections start campaigns to nooks and crannies, informing voters on their manifestos, promises on projects to execute and developments that would cover all irrespective of regions, tribes or other dissimilarities. Rules that govern how political campaign is done vary from one country to another, hence in some developed countries, supporters hold posters, solidarity cards and converge peacefully in specified locations where candidates address them. Reverse is the case when it comes to African countries, roads are blocked by supporters, idle youths are given hard drugs, some weapons to attack oppositions and most campaign promises end in words.
Usually, during such political campaigns, contestants of different parties cover long distances to meet electorates including those residing in inaccessible areas but never look back at them after winning the sought positions. For years, voters are been deceived with small amounts to vote for a person who they really know he or she is not capable of steering their affairs, hence some accept the offered money due to high level of poverty. Moreover, others do so because of greed to accumulate wealth through vote selling, such individual or groups are the reason for our current mess. People sprouted from grassroots are contesting different positions, sadly, absentia of resources, political tutors or financiers compelled them to give-up.
Youths are the strength of every responsible nation, egocentric politicians are using them in suppressing their opponents, destabilizing rallies as well as eliminating whoever their bosses do not want to see. Unfortunately, derailed politicians are not involving their loved ones in political thuggery rather, they send them abroad to widen their horizons in best institutions while abandoning those used in campaigns to rust in drug abuse, unemployment and unproductiveness. Furthermore, high number of candidates before elections participate in community development works like clearing of drainages, assisting security agents at nights, offering materials and financial supports to destitute, they stop all efforts and activities after winning elections.
Factors that play significant roles in bastardising the good manifestos and plans of candidates during and after elections includes uncontrolled love of worldly things by electorates; it forced some candidates to borrow huge amounts to invest, after winning the election, they skillfully engage in good and bad acts just to get back their monies along with profits. Second factor is the selfish interest of elites such as religious or traditional title holders, they influence majority of voters to exercise their franchise to person they love primarily for their benefits. After the election, abiding to decisions of God-fathers or sponsors even if they would cause hardships, an elected leader could not do anything without their consent no matter how impactful it is. Last one is the nexperienced campaign members.
In summary, political campaigns in Nigeria would be hitch-free if the following measures are taken, each candidate going out for rally should not hire thugs, if it is a must then he or she must involve his loved ones; youths should stop political thuggery as there is nothing good in it. Communities should have several documents that contains their challenges and needs, they should be presenting them to candidates that come for campaigns, their representatives should sign as well as the candidates; they should be reminding them after elections, this would halt cases of unfulfilled campaign promises. People need to be giving chance to ordinary candidates, majority of such contestants are selfless, industrious and have performed excellently well positions held; one could not say much on book by the cover till read the content, so try them.
May We Have Smooth Political Campaigns. Amen
Mukhtar can be reached via [email protected]