A presidential aspirant and former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Kingsley Moghalu, says the resilience of Nigeria’s democracy is increasingly being tested.
In an opinion piece monitored by National Daily, Moghalu said Nigerians have the right in the world to question the authority and legitimacy of the country’s current political leadership over the recent invasion of the National Assembly by operatives of the Department of State Security (DSS).
“That many of these barred members of parliament have repeatedly abused their positions of power for self-gain is another matter that must be addressed at a later date. What occurred on 8th August, 2018 was no less than an alarming, orchestrated full-frontal assault on our democracy, and Nigerians are right to fear the direction in which our country is heading,”Moghalu said.
Speaking on the voter’s registration window, he said closing registration a full six months before the elections and four months earlier than the 2014 registration period, was tantamount to disenfranchisement of a large swathe of Nigeria’s large population.
“I have urged the policy-makers to think and act democratically: as more people get involved, as more people understand that a vote is an opportunity, our democracy will grow stronger. The young people will be the driving force of Nigeria and to deny them a more active role is nothing short of irresponsible sabotage.”
He said Nigerian politics has been effective at silencing the people by fostering the notion that their voice no longer matters, adding that the power struggles between the ruling All Progressives Congress and the opposition’s Peoples’ Democratic Party has further created political unresponsiveness.
“A beleaguered economy, massive unemployment, a crumbling healthcare system and fighting to overcome poverty consumes the daily life of the average Nigerian. They have little energy to expend on politicians who repeatedly demonstrate that in the battle of the elephants, citizens will always be the grass at their feet.”
“Since I have announced my intention to run in the presidential elections, I have travelled across the country and meet thousands of everyday people. Their stories, their commitment to hard work, and strong sense of community despite their hardships have inspired and continue to inspire me.”
The senior United Nations officials, however disclosed that many Nigerians are estranged from the very politics that affects their lives and the unfortunate headlines engenders apathy not hope. “Our project to build a nation that Nigerians can be proud of is making progress, but we cannot achieve true, lasting progress in the absence of the right institutional decisions.”
“Boosting voter turnout for the upcoming elections is one of the key battles worth fighting in our quest for a solid democracy. We cannot achieve peace and security when politicians shirk accountability, where institutions constrict votes. An open and inclusive democratic process is the bedrock of a safe and prosperous Nigeria.”
“In the coming days and months, my team and I will continue to speak in favour of more inclusion—our voice will become louder and more united as we seek what is normal in every consolidated democracy,” he said.