(By Iheanyi Ezinwo) – The last seven years have been nightmarish for most Nigerians and the 2023 election presents an opportunity for change of the narratives.However, like our elders say, things don’t just happen, they are made to happen. In other words, whatever changes that Nigerians desire, they are the ones to bring them about and not angels. It is probably this understanding that necessitated the intensification of campaigns for citizens who are up to 18 years and above to obtain their Permanent Voter’s Cards.
The corollary is that, in the kind of representative democracy that is practiced in Nigeria, the power of the citizen is in his vote. With it he can choose those who lead him. However, the efficacy of the Voter’s Card in enthroning accountable governments has since been weakened in Nigeria by religious and tribal sentiments.The implication has been the crowding out of the values of relevant knowledge and experiences as well as integrity as basic requirements for those who seek to rule over others.
The result is where the country is today: a dis- functional society where the security of lives and property are no longer guaranteed: Where governments are no longer accountable to the people, and the welfare of the citizens have been thrown out of the window. The fit and proper candidate to take Nigeria out of the woods of despondency is the one who thinks in the long term – taking into consideration the future generations, and not only interested in short term benefits.The right person is the one who will work for the greater good of the society, and will not subordinate public interest to his selfish, tribal or religious interests.
Nigeria has the resources that can sustain free education up to post – primary school level. Countries without half the resources that Nigeria has pay allowances to the unemployed; provide adequate health care services and put machinery in place for the protection of lives and property, as well as run a government that is transparent and accountable to the people. These are the indices that are used in measuring the quality of leaderships and societies. Unfortunately, over the years, Nigeria has found herself at the bottom of the ladder.
The right man for the number one job in Nigeria come 2023 is the one who meets the stated requirements. Above all, he must be a role model in all ramifications to the youth and elderly, and not a person of doubtful integrity. The time has come for Nigerians who sincerely desire a non violent change in the country to look beyond ethnic and religious sentiments for once and join hands to enthrone a leadership that will be comparable to the best in the world ; and who can pull Nigeria out of the dept of helplessness. This is a debt that the present generation of Nigerians owes succeeding generations.