Towards ’83 Elections: The Ruling Class In Crisis

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The events and developments of the past few weeks in the politics of Nigeria especially as they concern the preparations for the 1983 elections, ridiculous as they seem, only go to confirm what foresighted Nigerians understood and expected long before now.

After the storm of nomination primaries by the various political parties – without doubt, some are still to be concluded – which gave the working people of this country yet another opportunity to see and learn that the rulers do not have the slightest belief even in their own brand of democracy, the Federal Electoral Commission (FEDECO) announced that it was embarking on the checking of voters’ lists all over the country. Hardly had the
exercise started and countless irregularities were discovered all over the place. Missing names, misspelled names, changed sexes, and numerous other crimes were reported. Yet these lists were supposed to have been printed in far away the United Kingdom so as to check irregularities!

What, after all, is the concern of Hankali and the toiling people of Nigeria out of whose sweat come the millions of Noira to be wasted on this exercise? Our concern grows out of our understanding of the rulers and the system they operate.

As long as the rulers and this system continue, only the interests of the tiniest minority in this society can be protected. What is more, they (the rulers ) keep demonstrating that they are incapable of ruling us.

It is noteworthy, for example, that in addition to FEDECO’s wastage of several millions of Nara on an exercise it cannot properly handle, some of the rulers, ( Governor Sam Mbakwe for example) have also annoyed us by suggesting that the ruling of Nigeria should be given back to Britain! Yet this is supposed to be one of the rulers in the country!!

But the rulers must come to power at all costs. The primary elections of the respective parties which witnessed a lot of do-or-die maneuvers among party stalwarts were only the beginning of a long process of their fight against the people and democracy in 1983. We recall, for example, that during the revision of voters’ lists last year, Governors Ige, Onabanjo, Jakande, and Nwobodo, threatened the people in their respective states with a number of measures should they fail to register as voters who will get them back into office in 1983! That was not all.

Governors Ajasin and Ige both recently declared a week’s holiday for the schools in their states in a further effort to prepare the ground ready for their return to power. These misbehaviors by these rulers have just one interpretation – they are all desperate.

It is, therefore, necessary for the workers and patriots of Nigeria to know that an alternative has to be sought to this system that encourages incompetence and makes hustling for political office ( a means of looting) a virtue rather than a criminal vice Something has got to be done!!

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