Politics of Personal Interest: The State of Nigerian Democracy

The Nigerian political experience since independence clearly discloses a sour story which calls for sober reflection. Different reasons have been advanced by scholars and commentators for the present state of affairs.
Topmost among these reasons is the failure of leadership. The question is, is there any future for Nigeria’s democracy? Politically and economically, we see ourselves in the politics of policing, witch-hunting, backbiting and politics of personal or vested interest. No wonder the current trend of events in this country reveal the presence of a truncated political culture and a clear lack of national ideology. This is injurious to our democracy.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) led-government of President Mohammadu Buhari seemingly promised Nigerians a smooth ride. The political atmosphere was filled with the euphoria of change to the effect that Nigerians felt that upon assumption of office, the new administration was going to replace old wine with new – an indication of real change.
However, few months down the line, security challenges and a comatose economy stare us in the face. The government of the day has been criticized for lopsided political appointments. With these one-sided appointments I ask, is this the celebrated integrity? Let us live in the present – let us stop celebrating past glories. “I get integrity ama before integrity na property?
Besides, the list of the recently released ministerial nominees does not suggest willingness to bring in a new set of young technocrats who will help the president deliver on his promises – with a cream of recycled politicians, victory may be far from home. Fans of this administration would insist that it is too earlier to judge but the adage goes, “you get to know how Christmas will be on Christmas-Eve.”
These and other similar happenings saturating the political atmosphere indicate that the greatest threat to Nigerian democracy is not impurity, corruption as many may think. This writer thinks, what is responsible for the current state of affairs is the promotion of personal or vested interest before national consideration.
We are unfortunate again, this time to have leaders whose personal interest outweighs their national consideration and the collective interest of all. There is a gap between promises and performance, my dear people; we enjoy every right in theory, but not in practice.
I remember with kin interest the manifestos of two opposition parties before elections and the promises made by each candidate should he be elected and the “Peace accord” drama. If these promises were honestly implemented, Nigeria will be a dreamland for other nations.
But reverse is the case. Instead of trying to meet up with the promises that were made to the masses, those concerned are busy chasing the winds. An adage goes: “He that his house is on fire does not chase rats.”
Nigeria is at crossroads. Why chase after shadows? When Bishop Matthew Kukah said the government of the day should focus more on governance and nation building, many people were not comfortable with that. Me thinks that those on the saddle should concentrate on how to better our moribund economy thus fulfilling the promises they made before they are voted out of office.
Does the travails of the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki suggest he is been tried for misdeed or because he is not the anointed heir for throne? Since the matter is before a competent court, we leave it at that. Is Nigeria’s democracy on the right track? I am tempted to ask “Co-vadis Nigeria?” Is there any future for the democracy our founding fathers paid the supreme prize? You say!