In truth there are no true political parties in Nigeria.What we have are ideologically non specific political platforms available to the rich and heavily influential persons to contest elections.
A political party is defined as an organised group of people who have the same ideology, or who otherwise have the same political positions on pertinent issues, and who field candidates for elections, in attempt to get them elected and thereby implement the party’s agenda as unequivocally stated in its official and universal manifesto.
In truth, presently, none of the prominent parties in Nigeria qualifies to be so called as per the above definition.
It is therefore not a surprise that the various anomalies being exhibited by both PDP & APC in the present imbroglio going on in Edo politics.
In an organised party no national chairman will behave as Adam’s Oshiomhole has done. Also a party faithful and political protege of a political leader will not conduct his affairs as Gov Godwin Obaseki has done. Under these circumstances the disposition of Pastor Ize Iyamu lacks integrity and comportment befitting a person aspiring for leadership of a state.
On the PDP side, apart from obvious desire to win by whatever means possible, the lack of due process and institutional consultation betrays the inherent weakness in that organisation as is common to all political formations in the country.
People who are either hypocrites or lacking understanding of the true practice of politics over emphasize the issue of internal democracy in the political parties.
Parties are set up to win elections and gain political power in an open competition with other political parties. Its neither a tea party nor a free for all circus.
Leaders must meet and consult widely and take a decision who can best lead the party to victory in any election. That process may not be entirely democratic but rather extensively consultative and inclusive. When decisions are arrived at, the aspirants are then consulted individually and collectively. They are educated as to why a certain candidate is preferred and thereafter persuaded to seek another office or wait till the party wins when they will be compensated. If there are serious resistance to consensus, the leaders use their influence and leverage on the party members to tow party line. Recalcitrant aspirants will lose primaries if the leaders know their onions. Which ever way democracy will still be served.
Our present political parties, if we continue this way, may not endure.
Especially if leadership is based on the holding of political offices. In a constituent, for a pure technocrat appointed a minister becomes the political leader of that constituency is wrong.
So also becoming a state governor cannot automatically confer political leadership on the occupiers of such offices in spite of their highly dignifying and exalted status.
This is not a strange consideration. During the SDP & NRC periods, state governors were not the leaders of the parties in their states.
What has happened is that since the advent of money supremacy in Nigerian politics, the ones that has the largest funds, and who invariably are the state governors, become the leaders of parties even where the said governor joined politics 3months to his elections!!!!
The sad consequence of this is that the some state governors, ignore competent and highly qualified and experienced personalities in their states and send their lackeys and stoogies to the federal level for political party and government appointments. Many state representatives at the federal levels are therefore mediocres and often need clearance from their paymasters before they can speak in public or take actions befitting of their offices if they are holders of party offices or heads of agencies or federal parastarals.
Political party Reforms in Nigeria is therefore an inevitable imperative.We need to allow ideological parties with robust and practicable manifestos to emerge.
Leadership must be based on knowledge, party loyalty, commitment and length of service. We need to move away from the present CASH & CARRY politics of today and pursue developmental politics in the realm of the sublime. In a country where politics is sadly everything, then we need to get that politics right.
I HUMBLY SUBMIT.