Nigeria’s democracy, Boko Haram and public orderliness!

by L.Chinedu Arizona-Ogwu

Nigeria’s well-being depends on a lot of things, among which economy and security play a prominent role. If these things are not taken care of, government’s claims of a pro-people regime are inconsequential.

I did notice that the biggest challenges in Jonathan’s government are undefined ethno-religious barrier. People living in Nigeria today, seem to support his government not because of the prevailing politics of sectarian indifference, but because he did not only gave some peace to the people, but steering the economy to an acceptable standard. The contrast is that of his attitude towards the incumbent politicians. Such attitude is ” I don’t care if you are corrupt, all I care is whether you are against the opposition or not”. If you are against those 2, we will overlook all your faults just as we are overlooking all faults of our advisors.

Well, those rotten politicians who are presently stealing our collective monies as of today; should realize you can’t just act as a mayor, a governor and or a lawmaker every time of your life. Few good people will come to clean up the mess you made all the years. You can’t just ask them to fix every institution which you deliberately paralyzed all these years. Can’t just ask in the name of neutrality to punish few thugs and criminal, but leave you untouched without holding you accountable and responsible. You can’t just ask them to work hard every day and night to make your way to power, only to see you taking whole nation as hostage very next day.

In a contemporary Nigeria; I see few pains for the greater gain. However, there is this other possibility. A few pains just in vain taking the country down the drain. But seriously, what guarantee is there that this dispensation will be better than what existed. And on a more serious note, shouldn’t it be the people who decide rather than a few local politicians against over 150 million intellectuals, technocrats, citizens among experts. It’s very easy to pick out one issue and fix it, but in the grand scheme of things everything becomes fuzzy. I have a feeling the Buhari’s CPC party has lost its plot; By Boko Haram or joint violence and whatsoever. However threat, bomb and blood spills; Nigeria is still on its feet. Despite these challenges, Mr. Jonathan, as Nigeria’s president, has to realize it is in his hand to transform Nigeria and fix its priorities accordingly. He has to realize that most politicians in seat today, have no accountability and Nigerians expected they cannot falter.

GEJ sir; if you don’t have a clear solution then what’s the point in arguing? Don’t we have enough problems? No more straight-cut to ascertain due process in civil service at our country; you pay your way-out. What a mess? We need solutions and lot of us are trying to suggest solutions to problems but things that happen around us, seem to look at the problems without suggesting the alternatives.

Most governors in Nigeria today came in with good intention; I can name somebody like Gov. Chibuike Amaechi of Rivers State, but forces from behind is shifting his hands from doing good. Mr. President, is that democracy? If barring them is so constitutional and democratic then I guess we should just forget what some indicted governors did in the past and turn a blind eye to what they will do in the future.

If public critics do not intervene in some politicians wrong-doing, who do you think will intervene? The public is like a little kid and when it comes to better regime; it is like offering them what kind of cereal they want when they all are from the same social background.
If public critics are so evil then why don’t we just disband them and get rid of them?

Mr. Ibrahim Babangida should know this, Mohamadu Buhari should understand this; you do not sow without reaping. However you sow seed of discord probably to breach someone’s program of government. Nobody rules Nigeria forever, one day you will undergo the same stress. If you are spewing at solutions that do not address Nigeria’s ethno-religious problems, you could encounter nemesis.

Listen, it is not my job to create solutions for the national political problems. And the concerns I raise is not only mine, a lot of the top policy makers (non partisan) raise the same concerns. I am currently in Nigeria and I am interacting with people and seeing the things as they are going on. Not saying things based on what is being written in newspapers. If they are found guilty, they should go to jail. However, the cases against Boko Haram for which they had been wagging-mouth are very sensitive and if they get out unscathed, history could not stand. But on a different note, why were they not allowed the Boko Haram sect to table their grievances to the country, since its political undertone is very clear? These are some questions that the CPC has not answered. If Obasanjo or Jonathan did the exact same thing, when Buhari was on seat or when IBB was reigning, I do not think you would have appreciated it and called the whole thing illegitimate government.

Neither was they out to give vent to their grievances. Flaunting the banner of democracy, they undermined democracy and the legal system. Their purpose was to sow dissension among the people, plunge the whole country into chaos and sabotage the political situation of stability and unity. This is a planned conspiracy and a disturbance. Its essence is to; once and for all, negate the leadership of the CPC and the socialist system. This is a serious political struggle confronting the whole party and the people of all nationalities throughout the country.

It has come to the knowledge of the Government that the Boko Haram violence is actually being planned on a general scale by certain elements acting for a northern group. In addition, it is understood that attempts against the Nigerian lives are contemplated. These acts of violence are intended to secure the overthrow of the legally elected Government by force and the Boko Haram is being used as a screen for the general plan. These plotters intend to give Nigeria a sleepless night. Such a course of action will be very likely to end in riot and violence. The people who plan this operation must be aware of this. It seems that they are seeking to cause turmoil and unrest in order to halt our march to Independence and economic well being for all.

This small clique is determined to preserve their positions of privilege. They want to create another Congo here. They talk about freedom and democracy, but are determined to use unconstitutional means to achieve these ends. They feel that they can depend on foreign support.In the circumstances the Government intends to take energetic steps to forestall this plan and I am now appealing to all reasonable public minded citizens not to allow themselves to be persuaded or fooled into taking part in what can only be a disastrous and futile effort on the part of a small misguided and selfish element in the community to turn back the clock of history.

If we are tolerant of or conniving with this disturbance and let it go unchecked, a seriously chaotic state will appear. Then, the reform and opening up; the improvement of the economic environment and the rectification of the economic order, construction, and development; the control over prices; the improvement of our living standards; the drive to oppose corruption; and the development of democracy and the legal system expected by the people throughout the country, including the teeming young Nigerians, will all become empty hopes. Even the tremendous achievements scored in the reform during the past decade may be completely lost, and the great aspiration of the revitalization of Nigeria without any future.

The whole party and the people nationwide should fully understand the seriousness of this democracy, unite to take a clear-cut stand to oppose the disturbance, and firmly preserve the hard-earned situation of political stability and unity, the Constitution, democracy, an

d the legal system. Under no circumstances should the establishment of any illegal organizations as Boko Haram be allowed. It is imperative to firmly stop any acts that use any excuse to infringe upon the rights and interests of legitimate organizations of Nigerians. Those who have deliberately fabricated rumours and framed others should be investigated to determine their criminal liabilities according to law. Bans should be placed on unlawful parades and demonstrations and on such acts as going to factories, rural areas, and communities to establish ties. Beating, smashing, looting, and burning should be punished according to law. It is necessary to protect the just rights of Nigerians to go on their various businesses.

The broad masses of Nigerians sincerely hope that corruption will be eliminated and democracy will be promoted. These, too, are the demands of the party and the government. These demands can only be realized by strengthening the efforts for improvement and rectification, vigorously pushing forward the reform, and making perfect our socialist democracy and our legal system under the party leadership.

A number of offences including drunken behavior, drug abuse, child labour, creating public nuisance as cognizable offence punishable by imprisonment and fine should be given an attention. The Section of the Nigerian constitution that states “Holding of procession, public violence or squatting or other such agitation methods, tendency or potentiality of promoting enmity or hatred or disaffection between groups or sections or communities on grounds of religion, or ethnicity should be deemed to be disturbance of public order must be hold onto. Disturbance of public order is a punishable offence to punished by imprisonment of five years and fine not less than a reasonable amount.

If the opposition parties feel that sticking to this barrier, their opposition could be throttled, they should embrace peace. After 51 years democracy is yet threaten in this country. There are two sets of laws, one for the ruling party and one for the opposition. It is time the Government of Nigeria pulls up its socks otherwise peace will also vanish from this nation and it will become one of the trouble torn North African states.

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