In the Series: This is the concluding part of the series called Electoral Malpractices: Bane of Nigerian Politics where the Author; Bolaji Obadara proffers solutions to electoral malpractices in the country.
Read the first there(3) parts below if you have not done so:
The following solutions can bring an end to all the negativities caused by electoral malpractices in our country and also fix our electoral system which is now producing sour instead of sweet grapes:
If our country is going to become what we want it to be, then our political system which is the industry responsible for recruiting into and retrenching out of our leadership sector must become an epitome of sanctified patriotism.
The first and the most important is for this country to call a national reconciliation and reconstruction conference like what happened in the books of Ezra and Nehemiah. This will involve the acceptance and recognition of all tribes, languages, ethnic nationalities, religions, communities, cultures, and traditions. This step will help in giving a sense of belonging to all and sundry and pave a way for a really peaceful co-existence of Nigerians. This peace will give people the assurance of free and fair elections, fair hearing, and equality before the law, which will gradually roll away all forms of electoral malpractice in our nation. Once this has been done, other issues can now be addressed.
The issue of corruption, (looking at bribery, money laundering, diversion, and misappropriation) can be solved in Nigeria if, the government is ready to make the Naira more valuable. But we have been hit by the falling oil prices which have led to the devaluation of the Naira by CBN and austerity measures put in place by the economic team.
Not only this, the salaries and allowances of political officers should be reduced to the barest minimum. Again, the legislation of how much one can transfer as an individual or corporate organization should be further strengthened and made more effective. Unless, the amount an individual can have (in cash or in the bank) is officially reduced, with respect to their source(s) of income being monitored by financial intelligent agencies, the rate at which people will be scrambling for money will be going higher and the level of corruption will be aiming at the sky like the tower of Babylon. More value must be placed on intellectual capability and positive contributions rather than on how much people are worth in millions.
The annual national merit award should be restructured in a drastic way. The restructuring should allow for recognition of people who are working for the development of their community, students who have excelled like Daniel in their studies, vigilantes who ward off all forms of robbery and attacks on their local districts, teachers/lecturers who are genuinely special in their field. Broadcasters who especially appeal to large audiences on national issues, Medical personnel who have been clinically tested and proven to be true lifesavers, people who return stolen/lost/missing items (especially money), Prisoners who are found worthy in learning and character and so on.
Economic policies must be changed and youth-focused. Since youths are the most unemployed in this country, then the government should see it of utmost importance to get them into self-sustaining jobs. The issue of years of experience requests from youths/fresh graduates should be barred. The government should guarantee, transmit, and distribute electricity that will be constant and enough for all places, households, industries, factories, workshops, and so on. By the time this happens, the rate of unemployment will be colossally reduced, because millions of jobs rely on a constant power supply to survive. It should also be noted that Nigerians will pay less for services like transportation, telephone, fabrication, document processing, etc. if the power supply is at per with the population demand. Industries should be established with industrial training students, national youth service corps members, and internship students in mind. These industries will be run by the aforementioned groups. Through this, the necessary job experience will be obtained and they can even get an appreciable capital to start their own businesses.
More so, Technical, Vocational, and Entrepreneurial courses should be worked into our school system from the basic level and no student should be given a certificate of any school level i.e. (primary, junior secondary, senior secondary, and higher institution) without an acceptable standard of practical knowledge in these areas.
Another area of attention is the issue of tribalism, nepotism, regionalism, religious and language bigotry will be tackled if all appointment will be criminalized once it is not based on merit. Meritocracy will put an end to so many corruptions perpetrated on our land.
There was a time the Jews were mandated by God to wear the Torah (Ten Commandments) on their arms and foreheads. Later, God said He will write the laws on their heart because obedience cannot be achieved by force. For rule of law to take its stand in Nigeria, the constitution has to be drafted through a general consensus. Not only this, the law has to be taught to the people for them to understand, law unless purposefully understood will also be violated. Where purpose is not known, abuse is inevitable. This is the reason why the ‘Nigeria: good people, great nation’ campaign by the late Professor Dora Akunyili, must be revived and massively impressed on people’s hearts.
Supervision, monitoring, and maintenance of projects and public utilities should be accorded priority in our constitution in a way that the government and the citizen will take care of public utilities as they will do to their own.
In conclusion, there is nothing happening in the physical, that does not happen (have its foundation and running) in the spiritual. In lieu of this, there is an urgent need for the church in Nigeria to take charge of Nigeria in all spheres of our daily living. Ye are the light of the world and whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bind in heaven… The church in Nigeria (Christianity) is not a religion; rather it is a total way of life, so the ‘take charge’ here does not mean one religion domination. Leaders like Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Mordecai, Daniel, Peter, and Paul have to be groomed under the biblical leadership manual. Such people should be taught intellectual and biblical principles of discipleship and leadership but must be made to know that, the only time a country can be good is if it is governed under the ‘kingdom principles’.
Nigeria will be great again if the church will lay hold on the seat of authority and operate as biblically instructed.
Arise O Compatriot
To Build a Nation where peace and justice shall reign.