Transmuting society from primordialism to contemporary idyll, as well as alleviating surmountable pains of the citizenry, are some of my understanding of modern political pragmatism.
Taking a cursory look at the active players of the ought-to-be-beautiful game of politics, one is left bewildered at the height of incompetence and ineptitude that characterise many of them.
More than sixty years after breaking away from the life-chocking shackles of Anglo-Saxon hegemony, out of which are a notch over twenty unbroken democratic adventure, the country is like a rudderless ship and a gyroscope, spinning at a frantic pace and never going anywhere.
It is a commonwealth country with a speculative population of close to three hundred million, and plethora of ethnic groups of over three hundred; imbued with latent giftings and intellectual gravitas that has remained the envy of developed countries.
We are quick to remind outsiders of the platitude that “of every five black people on earth, one is a Nigerian”. I quite agree, but so what! when, back home, it translate to nothing.
The political firmament, which should’ve been our commonwealth, to be “shared” by all, has been “cornered” by a priviledged few whose stock-in-trade is eccentric greed, sleaze and egotistical idiosyncrasy.
We are living witnesses to the unabating plunder and brazen looting of the treasury; some politicians and their collaborators from the civil service and the banking sector are the most guilt-ridden; there is the unbelievable story of a Nigerian bank executive who stole ninety-five billion naira and got a paltry jail term of six months, while the drug czar of China had to face the guillotine for allegedly accepting two thousand dollars bribe. What a contrast…!
Many of our so called leaders are grumpy grouches who, with salivated relish and glee, corner the commowealth, as it where, and at their whimps and caprices, pass down crumbs to pitiable lumpents who, unfortunately, will never stop queueing in blistering sun and torrential rain to vote.
The country has witnessed countless elections in the last sixty years. And, in my humble view, none can pass as flowless and good example of a “fair game”; they remain in the anals of Nigerian political history as “carfully-crafted charade” and bad example of how elections should be conducted.
History, they say, has the tendency of repetition.
2019 was another election year in Nigeria and two kinds of eligible citizens had the opportunity to exersice a compelling franchise; to vote and to be voted for.
Those with the desire to be voted for where also two of a kind; One came to equity with “unsoiled hands”, genuingly manifesting good intentions by deflecting emphasis on “naira politics”. The other aspirant visited the electorate with apocryphal stories and fales claims of intimidating credentials made off-the-cuff; he or she had placed a prize-tag on the vote of the gullible voter. They emptied their vaults of millions of naira in exchange for votes.
And at the end, with unrefined candour, they basked in the euphoria of a kangaroo contest and needless frenzy of a pyrrhic victory, which was predicated on a skewed arrangement, ab initio.
There also were two kinds of voters; the discerning who could pierce through the veil of faleshood, fecklesness and treachery.
The other voter was the gullible and complacent proletariat who was blinded by the vainglorious ambivalence of a grotesque political jobber, with credentials of political shortsightedness to be proud of.
Methinks time has come when the electorate must be educated on how to extricate themselves from their fixated mindset and be more discerning.
Your vote is your power. When you place a prize-tag on it some unscrupulous politician can purchase it, no matter how highly-prized.
That puts a final seal on your lips restraining you from rightly questioning or challenging any misbehavior.
“When you picture life”, Rick Warren would say, “the image that comes to your mind is your life metaphor”. It is the view of life that you hold consciously or unconsciously, in your mind. It is your description of how life works and what you expect from it.
People express their life metaphors through clothes, jewelry, the cars they drive, their hair styles and even tatoos. Unspoken life metaphors influences life more than one realizes.
It determines your expectations, your values, your relationships, your goals and priorities.
Aspiring political leaders live in communal habitations and not isolated on islands. Their life metaphors are not insulated from human scrutiny. Nigerians must be unrelenting in asking questions.
Time has come when “leaders” of wrong values must be exposed. If your leader has a penchant for building hotels, he will corner what is due to your constituency to build more hotels for himself because that is his life metaphor.
If your leader delights in catching fun, he will certainly party, buy exotic cars and jump from bed to bed with your money that ought to give you expectations of good governance.
Be wise. Know your aspiring leaders and their life metaphors. Choose wisely.