Sunday, May 23, 2010

Voodoo Politics

Every time we think our honourable members cannot put their foot where food should go, they amaze us by their capacity to stretch the bounds of acceptable ineptitude.

Some brightly ignorant lawmakers, in the midst of our quest for election reforms, decided to resurrect General Babangida's political laboratory. 
They wanted a two party system; and were willing to legislate it! 

While we all know that even countries where 'two parties' subsist, they were not legislated, and other fringe parties still exist. These parties cater to a wide range of interests from the environmental, to the ultra nationalist.

This plethora of fringe parties, ensures that no one, no matter how obtuse, arcane, or tangential,  his/her views might be, is denied the opportunity of putting his/her ideas across to the broad population, the electorate.

Some people might be deceived into thinking that we have political parties right now; we probably have one or two. What we have are associations of individuals who want to control, and benefit from, the resources of the state.
That is why you see them moving from one party to the other. These amorphous, and amoebic, entities are not political parties.

In my view, they are like recruitment institutions, or clubs, for gaining political office. For these people, elections are an end, which translates to making money, and not a means to serving the people, and propagating one's political ideology.

Decent people, the world over, understand that political parties have manifestos, what we find the current crop of visible politicians doing, is listing what they think the people would like, a form of dishonest window dressing.

They have no intention of executing one item from their contrived manifestos, they are like lures to reel in the voters.

This was obvious when the late President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua, was elected, he came up first with the seven point agenda, then it became the seven plus one agenda. 

All of which was not his Peoples Democratic Part's manifesto. The PDP  did not even utter a whimper, by way of complaint; they were content to be in power, and enjoy the booty. 

That was why it took Yar'Adua more than six months to do anything meaningful. 

Contrast that with the new Conservative -Liberal Democrat government in the United Kingdom: two ideologically different parties in a coalition hit the ground running. 

They were able to do this because they had in place concrete ideological road maps they could deploy immediately.

Plurality of ideas is the hallmark of democracy. Freedom of association is a universal fundamental human right.

If you ask the proponents of the two-party morass the reason for their action, they would probably mouth the usual obscurantist platitude that too many parties lead to instability. 

They fail to realize that in some countries certain parties choose to be regional in scope, others even have ethnic agendas.

But their actual motive is the elimination of potential competition. It is easier to hoodwink one set of eyes, it becomes more difficult when you have fifty pairs looking at you from different angles. That is the fear of the PDP.

The other argument you will hear is that our 'nascent democracy' cannot tolerate so many parties. I have news for them, they might be nascent, and infantile in their political knowledge, it does not mean that the rest of us are. 

We know what is right, and what we want, and we are mature to see their sleight of hand!

They are actually standing reason on it's head. "Two party systems",in reality, freely evolve from a multitude of parties, they are not legislated.

A Two Party system is not the absence of  other parties, rather it is the presence of two dominant parties among a multitude of fringe, and special interest parties. That is democracy. Sadly, these clowns do not even get it.

Until they do,


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