Chris Nwaokobia draws to urgent matters of nation building beyond partisanship
I am compelled to add a few words to the foreclosure that the Supreme Court verdict brought to the Presidential Election Petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and her presidential candidate former Vice President Atiku Abubakar. I shall do so as an active participant in the electoral process since 1999, and more effectively since 2011 when I ran as a Presidential candidate in the election that produced Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The ruling of the Supreme Court dismissing the petition of the PDP as lacking in substance and merit calls for nothing but a holistic overhaul of our electoral protocol, ranging from the Electoral Act to the general provisions of the Constitution guiding the conduct of elections in Nigeria. We also must interrogate the appointing protocols of the Electoral Umpire, ranging from the appointment of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Chairman to the National and State Electoral Commissioners. And we must explore the possibility of electronic voting and Diaspora Voting in future elections.
Now that the 2019 Presidential Election is over, the Federal Government, particularly the executive and the legislature must pursue electoral reforms such that must restore huge confidence in the electoral process.
Now that the Election is finally over, the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), the lead opposition party, the PDP and the many shades of partisans that bestride the political amphitheatre must realise that beyond politics and politricks is the welfare and wellbeing of the nation and indeed the hoi polloi. We must raise the bar beyond the Hailer/Wailer dichotomy. We must elevate the discourse beyond the Lover/Hater disputations, and we must pave the pathway to the promise we seek with fine sticks of just laws, equitable paradigms and fairness.
Now that the election is finally over, we must imbibe patriotism and love for nation as the way to go. If we love this country enough, we shall as one people congregate at the parlour from where the call for restructuring shall aggregate into a national manifesto, as the complete rework of the present structure of the Nigerian state is long overdue.
Now that the election is over, we must walk the path of peace and national reconciliation centred on true love, knowing that love fuels patience, forgiveness and longsuffering, and only then can we build a universe centred on peace, on oneness and on brotherhood, and by Jove forge a planet where justice, fairness, equity and peace is king, with Nigeria as the linchpin and the doorway to experiential brotherhood.
Now that the election is over, we must learn to live true to truth and be frank to our conscience, our fights in support of, and in defense of the selfish and soulless politicians that occupy this space, must diminish. And we must allow the illuminating light of truth to guide our debate as we call the integrity of public office holders to question, their character to judgement, and in justice demand like Caesar’s wife that they live above board.
And now that the election is finally over, we must collectively lampoon corruption, whether of the APC, of the PDP or of anyone in the public or private sector, we must insist that leadership be incorruptible and service driven. And this position must be indiscriminate of our partisan, and or political loyalty, for such must be the permissible minimum if we truly want a prosperous nation.
In the final analysis, I must congratulate President Mohammadu Buhari and pray that the APC takes governance beyond political gerrymandering, sloganeering and propaganda to practical policy programmatic. And may the Rule of Law matter to the Ruling Party. God Bless Nigeria.
* Nwaokobia is the Convener of CountryFirst Movement