Any ruling party can make even a goat win an election. The only exception to this great truism is Goodluck Jonathan who lost his baton.
Nigeria had a much-ballyhooed presidential election on February 25, and there is not much to report except that the election was bought and sold.
Any talk of the elections being free, fair and credible belongs to fiction.
The election result was declared at the ungodly hour of 4am, and losers in the contest were asked to go to court.
It’s a well-worn mantra – steal the election for me and tell the opposition to go to court very fast.
The cookies crumble in the court where justice can be equally bought and sold without any batting of an eyelid.
The chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Mahmoud Yakubu, had shown his hands early enough in the manner he “buharigged” the 2019 presidential contest in favour of the then incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari.
All the talk about BVAS being a game-changer in Nigerian elections has been turned into utter tosh.
The 2023 presidential election has rightly been adjudged as the worst ever in Nigerian history.
It would have been better to announce the winners of the elections before conducting them.
All the money wasted could have been saved.
It is quite convenient to dismiss Nigerian politicians as master riggers of elections without paying due compliments to our colonial masters, Britain, that introduced the high art into our benighted shores.
Because the pre-Independence elections were rigged by the British certain figures are now taken as a given in Nigerian polls.
In the run-up to the Second Republic Richard Akinjide stated that his party, the National Party of Nigeria (NPN) needed to produce its presidential candidate from the North because the region has the largest population in the country.
This population issue is all a ruse because no credible census has ever been conducted in the country from the colonial times to this day.
The censuses and elections have all been manipulated to fit a formula to serve the interests of the British colonists and their minions.
It is my duty here to remind the wide world that the Northern Peoples Congress (NPC) which ended up forming the government at independence in 1960 actually came last in the elections if the popular votes were meant to count.
The popular votes of the independence elections of December 12, 1959 show that Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe’s NCNC-NEPU coalition scored 2,594,577 votes to place first with Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s Action Group (AG) coming second with a total of 1,992,364 votes while Sir Ahmadu Bello’s Northern Peoples Congress (NPC) came last with a total vote count of 1,992,179 votes.
According to Nnamdi Azikiwe in his book, Ideology for Nigeria: Capitalism, Socialism or Welfarism, “The colonial regime had so adroitly manipulated the electoral constituencies that the most unpopular party (NPC) won the most seats (142); the most popular coalition parties (NCNC-NEPU) won the second highest number of seats (90); whilst the second most popular party (Action Group) won the least number of seats (73). The remaining number of seven seats (sic) were shared by independents.”
In line with the diabolical constructs of the colonial government, none of the parties was able to win a simple majority of the 312 seats in the federal legislature to enable it to form the government.
It’s against this background of manipulation that the independence regime was forged via a coalition of the NPC and the NCNC under Prime Minister Abubakar Tafawa Balewa forgetting that he had back in 1947 said “Nigerian unity is only a British intention for the country” and that “if the British quitted Nigeria now at this stage the northern people could continue their uninterrupted conquest to the sea.”
This make of unbridled and very crude ethnic chauvinism has led to so-called leader after leader of northern extraction, following the lead of the British, stacking favours such as more states, local governments, electoral wards, forged higher population etc in favour of the region.
The military regimes turned this strategy into a tradition such that the country is now thoroughly lopsided as opposed to the reality on the ground before the coming of independence.
It’s a pity that people who count on themselves as enlightened Nigerians perennially gloss over this conditioned inequity.
Nigeria thoroughly needs to be deconstructed or restructured or whatever.
The powers-that-be know this for a fact, and that is why they insist on the pain of death that the status quo must endure forever.
If a truly credible census is conducted in the country today I am sure the shocker will be so much as to kill off all the potentates feasting off the lies of Nigeria as presently constituted.
It is in having workable statistics in regard to population that credible elections can be conducted.
In the absence of truth in the polity, what exists now can be tagged as the divine rights of the feudalists as enshrined on high by Britain.
Now another stooge has been selected in place of an election, and a same-faith ticket has been dangerously foisted on a multi-faith country.
The manipulated imbalance of the country has been so woefully exposed by the crude elections.
It’s one thing to steal an election only to ask the opposition to go to court – and another matter entirely to run a country that can survive the upheaval.