Nigeria needs 2 party system -Agagu, Arije
By Evelyn Omotoye
A Professor of Political Science, Prof. Akinsola Agagu and a former labour leader, Pastor Oyekan Arije have canvassed for a two party system for the country.
They described the proliferation of political parties in the country as an incentive to political instability and imminent revolution.
Agagu, who frowned at the existing 99 political parties in the country argued that such promotes lack of clear ideology, goals and desperation to get to power.
He suggested that the best option for the country in order to develop democratically is to have two political party system or at most five parties, where people would already know what each party is known for and its ideological inclination.
“This will serve as panacea to shameful cross carpeting which promotes political instability, vote buying and desperation to get to power. Beyond the party system, the personalities of the candidates also matter,” he noted.
Agagu, who insisted that Nigeria needs ethical revolution, added that it does not mean until people’s blood is shed, but it will be a process to re-examine ourselves and why we have all failed.
He said that it could start from the various homes, schools, religious bodies and the mass media.
“There are basic things people must know if our democracy must work. Our problem is political socialisation. We must realize that candidates must have manifestoes, they must have critical mind, they must be chosen based on their antecedents and profiles and that is why political socialising agents must work together,” he said.
Agagu, who regretted that the country has degenerated electorally, said many politicians now campaign less, waiting for the last minute to mobilise money to buy votes.
His words: “There are rules and regulations guilding the whole electoral process, but in Nigeria, there is no implementation or enforcement of such laws. All the institutions must perform their duties, the society needs to be strict with all these fraudulent ways of attaining power.
“Even the security agents who were deployed to polling units to prevent electoral fraud looked away while some were found aiding some individuals to perpetrate the act, this is the level of corruption in this society.
From the family level, we must mould our character. Vote buying will not lead us anywhere, we need to look for competent candidates and ensure they emerge through our votes.
In his own part, Pastor Oyekan Arije, a former Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) Chairman, Ondo State Chapter, predicted that Nigerian current political situation will open gate for a social revolution, noting that a social revolution is what is capable of checking the greed of the nation’s political class.
He said: “Greed has brought us where we are because everybody wants to get rich overnight. It is a very unfortunate development. It is modern day madness because the electorate and the politicians are guilty. The fellow whose vote was bought and the buyer are guilty because that will not give us the best material to function well in office.
According to him, anybody who bought his way into office would want to accumulate wealth when he gets there, to recoup whatever he has spent and also make provision for the future ones.
He said in the past, people did not buy votes, but campaigned, he said he also stood for election before and did not bribe anybody. “I canvassed my manifestoes.”
Arije, who also attributed huge salaries and allowances packaged by politicians for themselves as one of the causes of the problem, said unless there is a social revolution to put the political class in check, no other measure could restore sanity to the system.
He therefore called on the labour movement and civil society organisations in the country to bring about that change, saying Nigeria situation is bad and has permeated every strata of the society.
He noted that what is wrong with the leadership of the country is also what is wrong with the followers. He said if no politician offered money, the electorate could decide freely the right people to elect.
He called on Nigerians not to expect any change in this direction from the political class because they benefit from the system.
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