Every right and left thinking Nigerian surely knows who to vote for and why they have to vote. Not because of the repeated stories and promises we read and hear every day. Nigerians should take their political decisions based on previous and present actions of the candidates and their characters.
Unfortunately, we cannot judge them, based on the people they have surrounded themselves with, at least for now, otherwise, we may not vote anyone of them.
If only the presidential candidates will concentrate on telling us facts and figures on issues relevant to the yearnings of the people and stop this insidious campaigns of insults and embarrassment, I believe we should blame ourselves for seeing this coming and not avoiding it.
The late Chief Gani Fawehinmi founded the National Conscience Party (NCP) and we did not trust him with our votes, not even at a local government level!
We all know what he stood for, his sufferings to make life liveable for us as people, his brilliant and courageous performances, his uprightness and steadfastness. In the end of it, we lost him.
Today, most of us are beginning to appreciate the late Fela Anikulapo-Kuti for the revolutionary and intelligent lyrics he composed and rendered beautifully to fight oppression, corruption and other maladies in our society. He formed a political party, Movement of the People (MOP) and we did not trust him with our votes, until we lost him.
The 2015 voting pattern will change the permutations of politicians in this country and many of them will never come back into the ‘industry’ again.
Nigerians are coming up with a voting pattern that will not be based on religion or ethnicity; they will take good decisions that will change their lives not because of what the professional politicians stand for. Not because of some laughable endorsements by celebrities and superstars. Not because of godfatherism or political connections and even not because of what they read and see on the internet. All these will not change their voting decisions because they are now wiser.
All the parties and candidates should be prepared to tell the people how they plan to govern and be ready to be grilled for answers.
Nigerians will not condemn you for being rich, but they will want you to declare your assets.
Nigerians will like to know how you will create employment and not just to say we shall create jobs for youths. They have heard such promise before and to most youths; it makes no sense to them again.
Nigerians will want to know how much you are earning as a Senator, Representative, local government chairman and House of Assembly legislator. Nigerians will want to know how you intend to fight corruption, knowing full well that politicians and their parties are not immune to corruption. Nigerians will want to know how the budget deficit will be corrected. They want to know how the dilapidated and dangerous road networks in the country will be rehabilitated. All they want to know is how the decaying educational system will be brought back to its days of glory. They are also yearning to know how collapsed healthcare system would be brought back to life. To them, what is paramount is who will pay, regularly, the pensioners and how the issue of insecurity will be resolved. Lack of stable electricity is a well worn tale. They are anxious of knowing how this intractable problem would be fixed, once and for all. You can now know why our voting pattern will change the political calculations. It is the duty of all Nigerians to support the best candidates to emerge victorious in February, this year.
*Published in the Daily Times newspaper dated Tuesday, January 6, 2015