Nigeria: An Elusive Electoral Reform

By Adeola Aderounmu

After spending weeks and months touring the country in search of a genuine and workable electoral process, the electoral reform committee had their most important proposal overturn by the FEC-Federal Executive Committee.

A sitting president in Nigeria wants to keep the constitutional right to appoint the head of the Electoral committee. This overturn is not actually to suit Yar Adua. It is meant to suit anyone who finds himself in that maximum position.

Nigeria is ruled by a cabal and they are the ones that have actually rejected that proposal. They are making it clear that an incumbent (legally or illegally bundled into power) should hold on to the most viable source of self-perpetration.

True, it is the constitutional right of the president but who says that the constitutional cannot be amended? And what is even wrong for once to abandon such an ego-boosting function and allow a free flowing form of democracy? Everything is wrong with that in my country where the winners of political offices are the men and women with most money to spend and much more to loot.

And after listening to the views of some political gladiators I know that democracy is far from Nigeria. Nigerian politicians are ever selfish and those controlling the instrument of governance are the least people in search of change.

There is nothing wrong, to hand over the process leading to the emergence of the electoral chairman, to the National Judiciary Commission. If the NJC is controlled by the presidency, then the control should be removed. Nigeria and Nigerians must allow institutions to work.

Nigeria will not work until the institutions start to function. We must eliminate the reliance on people and leaders-they have all failed and that is why probably 40% of Nigerians are unemployed and more than 90m people are living desperately on less than 1 dollar per day.

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