The Oasis Reporters
March 9, 2018
I recently made a post tracing how our politics generally is journeying along this dirt road and placed the blame for the failure to get it right in the way we do politics squarely on the Gen. Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida junta for serially manipulating the transition to Civil Rule programme when that junta was at the controls.
The interference caused our politics the loss of the best breed of politicians we had at that time. In the end the harvest was a bounty of crooks and sundry criminals who gambled their way much in the manner and style of Naija and Beta bets. Their bets worked and the result is what is playing out before our own eyes.
On the face of it, all the necessary ingredients of a democracy are evident including contraptions in the mould of political parties, periodic elections whether free/fair or not, a judiciary occasionally the victim of serial rape and a press, occasionally gagged. The summary of it all is that we are left with what you may wish to describe as a dysfunctional democracy.
Using my Kaduna State as a case study let us examine the state of our democracy. Here is a gang that conspired and designed a trap in the guise of a campaign manifesto tagged “Let’s Make Kaduna Great Again” which the electorate fell for. The electorate that mid-wifed this electoral heist have now become victims on the trap set for them.
My understanding tells me that to Make Kaduna Great Again, you have a duty to create jobs, in Kaduna as things stand, over 40,000 of our people have been sacked. In an economy such as ours, you do not outsource jobs already being executed by others. Doing so simply puts many out of work, this is the situation with refuse/garbage collection and disposal in Kaduna. Some strange lady coming from out of the blues chanced upon the bazaar and was made the sole party for refuse/garbage collection and disposal in Kaduna.
The company undertaking this responsibility turned around to hire some of the same small contractors who she put out of work and by extension means of livelihood. The company identified by the initials ZL ended up not paying the small contractors which stalled the entire arrangement resulting in the garbage strewn on the only major road in the Sabon Tasha area of Chukun LGA of the State. The welfare and security promised us in the course of campaigning have turned out to be a mirage. This is compounded by the combustible nature and rhetoric coming forth from the State’s Chief Security Officer.
It is incomprehensible how this dubious government having extorted our votes will now turn out to making the same electorate that voted it to power her enemy. Virtually every policy of this government is skewed against the people. As you drive through the streets of Kaduna town, please just peep out of the window of the taxi or bus to see the hordes of young kids roaming about with empty/dirty plastic plates scavenging for food in the name of Almajirai.
Let a simple moral question be asked, what future is there for these kids? Without a formal education, would these same kids not grow up hating the unequal system through which they have grown?
The governor of Kaduna State did promise his government would deal with the almajiri culture but has clearly failed to deliver on that promise as well as many others.
No government except one that is insane will wake up and in demonstrating that insanity sack about 22,000 primary school teachers and still pretend to have the interest of the people of Kaduna State at heart. For a fact, it is common knowledge that there has been a terrible rot in the education system generally not exclusive to Kaduna State but the country at large but the manner and style the problem has been or is being tackled in Kaduna State is the issue.
We all are agreed to the fact that some surgery was necessary but given the advances in medical science it amounts to wickedness to undertake surgery without anesthesia. It is this type of surgery that was carried out on the primary school teachers. Without their severance allowances paid, the action amounts to a death sentence particularly in these difficult times.
Similarly, in a tenuous security environment such as we are into in Kaduna, no sane government will undermine security by sacking traditional rulers being key partners in maintaining the peace under any pretext.
Is anyone out there wondering why Kaduna has become a hotbed of violent kidnapping, armed banditry, cattle rustling and religious/communal violence?
When a tongue is not tamed you can but expect the kind of combustible and incendiary rhetoric which the population in Kaduna have no choice but to settle for.
In all of this, the losers remain you and I, if you are a denizen of Kaduna State and democracy by extension. The biggest loser being the platform upon which this cartel came to power, the All Progressive Congress. The frontiers of the APC have so contracted that some political vultures are beginning to fly low in anticipation. Shockingly when these same political thugs deploy language as ” Political rascals ” against their former political friends and opponents alike standing up against political thuggery as demonstrated during the attack at the NUJ Press Centre and most recently, the pulling down of the APC office at 11b Sambo Road, one will have to look deep in a dictionary for appropriate adjectives to describe such conduct.
The basic tenets of democracy have been brought to shame in Kaduna which all along has been the bastion of democratic ideals in the former Northern Region.
A democracy anywhere in the world without a credible opposition is at best a one party dictatorship. This is what the thugs in power in Kaduna State flaunt as a democracy. With the State House of Assembly having fallen flat on their faces before the dictator, the judiciary in a languid state, a press not so free and the opposition being hunted and under threat, you get a good picture of Kaduna State.
Those gleefully referred to as Political rascals are essentially members of the internal opposition in the governing APC since there is no opposition constituted by the other political party. This language is so crude and most unsavoury for any decent democrat to contemplate deploying in any speech no matter in what mood the speaker may be but as outlined in an earlier post, “From the abundance of the heart he Speaketh”.
To expect to listen to soothing language from the thugs in power in Kaduna is to expect a hard rock to yield water. Nobody can give you what he/she does not have. If the thugs in power in Kaduna truly love democracy and the APC, there should have been a level of moderation in both their rhetoric as well as in their conduct.
Those of us from the other side have refused to be intimidated by the thuggery and threats. We are free citizens of this nation and nobody can deny us that right. The worst that can happen to a freeborn is to submit to political thuggery, blackmail and or intimidation. We know that the game is almost up for these guys because the tenure of the government us circumscribed in time and we are almost there.
One way or another we shall work together as free people to effect a change of government in this State. We shall continue to lick our open wounds while also strategizing for the change. Kaduna State will be rebuilt, our looted patrimony recovered and the rot reversed. Kaduna State will therefore be a battleground between the forces of good and evil. We cannot wait to get there. I can foresee some of these guys heading to the summit of Kufena Hill not far from Zaria for the very purpose it was recommended by the dictator.
Written by Gora Dauda.
He writes from Kaduna, North West, Nigeria.