As the general elections buildup fall in line this month, I am very optimistic about the process and its transparency that ought to be entrenched. For Nigeria today, our somewhat definition of democracy and elections has been one littered with personal gains, transactional dealings and interest thus that we no longer respect its core tenets and objectives. The country’s electoral process today has litigations here and there whilst post election violence seems to be a norm due to the inability of the electoral commission to provide us with a free and fair system but this time, we must go a step forward.
A fortnight ago, i was particularly in joyous mood when President Goodluck Jonathan and other presidential aspirants signed a peace pact on non violence at the general elections sensitization workshop. This for me, was heartwarming because political parties and her supporters alike aside INEC share most of the responsibilities in ensuring we deliver on a free and fair election process for Nigeria. With the two main opponents (Goodluck Jonathan and Muhammadu Buhari) shaking hands in a rare camaraderie fashion, little is wished of the D-Day other than peace. Furthermore, INEC’s extension of the PVC collection till February 8th is highly commendable giving the several hundreds of thousand PVC that is yet to be collected and thus prone to sinister motives. This provides everyone with ample opportunity and time to pick theirs and thus be eligible to participate fully in the elections.
The elections this time is a major decider for our nation and its democratic process. A country adjudged to be the giant of Africa and having been a democratic society for sixteen years ought to have by now perfected the conduct of fair elections as a routine process for our political history but sadly we’re still far ahead from those that occur in civilized nations. From voter apathy to illiteracy and outright disenfranchisement, Nigerians have continuously been ‘sold’ every four years through wads of naira and stomach infrastructure. This premise has left us in shallows and if this year’s polls isn’t one of restoration, the future may as well be confirmed as mortgaged.
Having been a registered voter since 2011, I’ve come to love the alluring nature of democracy and its ability to seat and unseat through the power of ONE ballot.
This term, from the veterans down to the eligible youths, we must vote to fulfill our civic duty and elect representatives to nurture our nascent democracy, to express our opinion in setting up a proper democratic government where we build the government by the people, to serve the people. We must triumph this time. The Power of ONE (Mine and Yours) vote friends I’ve come to understand can truly turn this Nation around.
Nigeria can fulfill her destiny and be the greatest Nation on earth as we all see the potential. Through a proper election void of shenanigans, the elected can tame corruption, be more resourceful, ensure border protection alongside job creation and home / business security. If there is a perceived valueless offering from the incumbent and the opposition is policy driven with bold ideas, the incumbent thus would make way. This is exactly what democracy stands for and what the 2015 elections offer us all.
This time, we must vote. This time, we must wait and ensure our votes are counted. This time, we must not allow sentiments becloud our judgements. This time, We must protect our country’s heritage. Nigeria is ours to build and no other time than now because Nigeria can be better in our lifetime!