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what we learnt from Nigerian election

what we learnt from Nigerian election
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The teachings of Nigeria’s Elections 2019 to which I refer right here are usually not summary lessons-in-general or lessons-for-all-time, however concrete classes that emerged for the usage of political forces on the Nigerian Left that see the pressing want of re-dedication to the nice trigger and arduous process of constructing individuals’s energy, widespread democracy, Folks’s nationwide unity and socialism in Nigeria. For all tendencies and segments of the Nigerian Left, this four-point platform ought to be integral, that’s, inseparable into its parts. And for Marxists, this unbreakable non-linear chain ought to be a aware ideological and political selection.

I take into account the train of drawing robust and usable classes each obligatory and pressing after the tragic, miserable and demoralizing occasions of February and March 2019 – occasions that we known as normal elections. However no matter identify the occasions are formally given within the nation’s political historical past, Elections 2019 was a large demonstration of decadence, philistinism and neofascism on the a part of Nigeria’s ruling class as a ruling class. Past this, and of higher significance, Elections 2019 was a name on the Nigerian Left to be extra inventive and audacious in mobilizing really progressive forces to save lots of the Nigerian plenty from the present vicious circle – trajectory which Nigeria’s ruling class has imposed on the nation. There’s merely no different political power in Nigeria that may reprieve Nigeria as a united nation.

Features of Nigeria’s Elections 2019 from which vital classes should be drawn by the Nigerian Left would come with: crucial numbers and figures launched over the past couple of months – earlier than, throughout and after the elections themselves – by the Impartial Nationwide Electoral Fee (INEC); present high quality of electoral politics and elections in Nigeria; the array of political forces within the electoral fight; “energy of incumbency;” platforms and methods of the dominant political events, coalitions and candidates; contradictions between segments of the dominant political events and the central leaderships and candidates of the events; the brand new ethnic or “id” politics; variants of political mobilization (from popular-democratic, to populist, to neofascist); and stories and conclusions of election observers.

This checklist is, in fact, not exhaustive. The weather are overlapping and haven’t been listed in any strict logical order. Since every of those parts deserves no less than one full essay, what I can do within the remaining a part of this explicit piece is to proceed the introduction to all the topic.

In line with the United Nations and Nigeria’s Nationwide Inhabitants Council, the inhabitants of Nigeria is now about 200 million. The nationwide median age, that’s, the age which divides this inhabitants into two equal elements – one half above the age, and the opposite half beneath it – is about 18 years. This, coincidentally, is the minimal voting age. The implication is that about 100 million Nigerians are of voting age. Of this quantity, the Impartial Nationwide Electoral Fee (INEC) advised us that about 84 million initially registered for Elections 2019. We had been additionally advised that 72.eight million of this quantity collected their Everlasting Voters Playing cards (PVCs), whereas 11.2 million didn’t. Lastly, solely about 35 per cent of people who collected their PVCs truly voted within the Presidential and Nationwide Meeting elections of February 23, 2019. This was reported to be one of many lowest voter-turnouts in up to date Africa! The voter turnout was even decrease within the Governorship and state Homes of Meeting elections of March 9 and 23.

The 2 main ruling class events – the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Folks’s Democratic {Party} (PDP) – dominated all ranges of the elections together with the presidential contest. And never lower than 65 registered political events participated within the election, together with the presidential contest. President Muhammadu Buhari of APC gained the presidential contest with 15.11 million votes whereas Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of PDP, had 11.07 million votes. All the opposite presidential contestants had comparatively insignificant numbers of votes. However this end result was on no account a definitive assertion on these different candidates or the qualities of their political formations. No matter their particular person weaknesses, as political formations and as candidates, the capitalist social order and the political system adopted by the present set of rulers had cynically, however primarily excluded them from the electoral competitors ab initio. Whereas the electoral system and laws endorsed this exclusion, the competition as a complete was a affirmation that no severe mistake was made.

The official outcomes of the contests confirmed that whereas President Buhari of APC was stronger in Northwestern, Northeastern, Northcentral and Southwestern geopolitical zones, Alhaji Atiku of the PDP was stronger within the Southsouth and Southeast in addition to the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja. This distribution of electoral energy throughout the nation was roughly repeated on the different ranges of the overall elections: Senate, Home of Representatives, state Governors, state Homes of Meeting and FCT Municipal Authorities. It’s, nevertheless, essential to recollect that the majority the outcomes determined and introduced by INEC are usually not solely in political dispute but additionally in authorized contestation. Past that, it may be safely stated that Elections 2019 doesn’t take pleasure in even a minimal stage of public credibility – as a free and honest train.

Nigeria’s Elections 2019 can not simply be described, metaphorically, as a “conflict by another means.” It was a conflict actually. Nevertheless, in contrast to in fashionable wars the place there are worldwide “guidelines of engagement” that are binding, enforceable and sanctionable, Elections 2019 was a historic “throwback” within the method weapons of loss of life and destruction had been overtly and freely deployed by non-public political thugs on the one hand and armed brokers of the state on the opposite. In some situations, it was potential to differentiate between the 2 armed formations – by what they wore: armed brokers of the state wore uniforms whereas thugs had been in “mufti.” However in different situations it was merely inconceivable to make such distinctions since thugs usually wore army uniforms in “battles of deception” whereas armed brokers of the state, for a similar causes of concealment and deception, went to battle in “mufti”. To additional confuse the scenario it will seem that in Elections 2019 the facility to deploy armed brokers of the state was decentralized and devolved not solely to decrease ranges of authority within the armed establishments but additionally to senior politicians.

Now, allow us to undertake and re-define the idea of “minimal electoral democracy” or “low-intensity electoral democracy” as follows: We start by utterly ignoring the fabric situations of the individuals (that’s, how the plenty stay and reproduce their materials lives). We subsequent enable that any sort of marketing campaign message, together with outright lies, however in need of “hate speeches,” will be delivered to the individuals with out hindrance. Allow us to moreover ignore the nationwide literacy stage; and at last allow us to ignore the voter turnout, that’s, the fraction of the citizens that comes out to vote. HOWEVER, allow us to make sure that voters or intending voters are usually not obstructed or coerced or intimidated at any level within the voting course of; that votes are usually not purchased on the polling centres, however will be purchased at “protected” distances; that each vote counts and there’s no “rigging” at any level within the voting course of; and at last that the straightforward Euclidean guidelines of arithmetic are obeyed within the examination, counting and collation of votes. THEN it may be stated that we now have attained “minimal electoral democracy” or “low-intensity electoral democracy.”

The issues which are excluded on this descriptive definition are literally among the many indices that the political Left, together with the Nigerian Left, attaches a lot weight within the appreciation of electoral democracy. However we will see that even with this exclusion, Elections 2019 reveals that Nigeria is much away from electoral democracy of the bottom stage.


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Jamilu Abdurrahman
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9ja

Obe Adedolapo
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Obe Adedolapo

Nice

Abdulwasiu mohammed
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Hmmmm