Arise o compatriots, Nigeria’s call obey!

The democratic clock for our country has once again circled to that point where we start to prepare for the next round of general elections across the two main strata of the political hierarchy, the states and the federal levels. Elections are being planned for both the legislative and executive arms of government and the political and politicking buzz is all around the country now. INEC is once saddled with the responsibility to deliver an election that can be acceptable in its planning and execution in the broadest terms.

Zuma Rock, Abuja

Our democratic journey in this fourth republic has proceeded for some nineteen years now and the face of each chapter of our experience has always been the president who emerges from the cross-section of presidential candidates. This scenario is strengthened by the fact that we run the presidential system of government. Thus, each chapter of our journey has been characterized by the person who ends up in the Aso Rock Villa.

It is an open secret that practically all who have inhabited the villa have not been able to any plausible level to deliver on the promises they rode on to get into the exalted office. This has birthed the general air of despondency most of our fellow citizens approach the politics of our country with. I will not bother to proffer reasons for the below par performance of our successive administrations as these arguments always end up being buried in subjective sectional perspectives. What is clear for all to see however is that Nigerians have not enjoyed the inherent promise of democratic governance as advertized by successive administrations with only the cronies of these governments as the exceptions to this state of affairs.

At this time as we move towards the 2019 general elections, at least twenty two presidential aspirants have indicated their interest in wrestling power from the incumbent president, Muhamadu Buhari. This development with the possibility of even more aspirants declaring their interest in the coming weeks and months gives the impression that the citizenry is really dissatisfied with the current state of affairs. The further implication of this is that we as Nigerians are going to have to do the work of really evaluating these individuals to narrow down the field as we move on towards the primaries of the many political parties and eventually the vote in 2019.

This is important for our political experience to be steered by the people towards our collective desire for good governance and better living standards for our people and not just the political office holders. A process of unbiased and objective scrutiny of what each aspirant brings to the table must be created and engaged. We cannot afford to be disengaged and disinterested in the process this time around. Rather we must project the image of the president we want so as to serve early notices to the aspirants that will get some of them to back down if they do not meet our requirements and standards.

It is our joint responsibility to ensure that we discover that one who will truly work to ensure that the labors of our heroes past shall never be in vain by deploying service with the heart and mind to this one nation bound in freedom, peace and unity.