Nigeria’s Elections: Good people, great nation | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Nigeria’s Elections: Good people, great nation

Posted: Apr 2, 2015 at 2:41 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Nnedi Ogaziechi


As I write, the results of the Presidential elections are being collated and announced by the collation officers from the different states of the federation. The palpable tension is keeping the people at the edge of their seats both here in the country and around the world.

However, today, this column is celebrating the humanity in the average Nigerian. In the past week, , most international observers have expressed their appreciation of the Nigerian spirit of resilience and commitment to the Nigerian project. They were overwhelmed by the spirit of perseverance exhibited by Nigerian voters who are more committed to the democratic process more than the core politicians who have been giving them the shortest end of the stick.

The presidential election has come and gone but it will go down in the history of the country as the most keenly contested in the nation’s political history since 1999. The two major parties that took part in the election, the PDP and APC gave everything to the campaigns in ways we have never witnessed in the country.

The people showed so much enthusiasm to have democratic processes play out on election days in very free, credible and fair manner. On their own part, the people despite clear logistic challenges were very willing to bear with both INEC and the security agencies.

It was quite touching seeing Nigerians of different political leanings and social classes working and sacrificing everything to see that the election was held even into a second day. The people sat out at polling stations for long hours under the sun and even when there was heavy downpour, they didn’t abandon the process.

The eye witness videos and pictures of some Nigerians providing electricity generating sets to aid voting, collation and counting of votes were very touching. There were reported cases of ordinary Nigerians providing things like umbrellas for INEC officials, stamp pads for thumb printing and even snacks for fellow voters around not minding their partisan affiliations.

There were reported cases of voters providing torch lights for collation of results in very rare display of patriotic zeal. It was equally very admirable seeing very elderly people, the sick, the physically challenged and even pregnant women patiently waiting to cast their votes not bordering about all the discomfort involved.

In all, like this column has always maintained, no matter who wins this election, politics would never be played the way it has been done in this country since 1999. The awareness on the part of the people is amazing and never again would it be business as usual. The people are beginning to demand their full rights from the people who make and execute policies on their behalf.

On the other hand, political parties in Nigeria are beginning to learn from experience that democracy is not about anything else but the people. The parties would henceforth channel all energies to making governance more inclusive than what is seen at the moment.

The calmness shown by the people so far should show the people at the helm of political parties that the people are the reason for democracy and every action must be taken on their behalf.

Congratulations to Nigerians who have shown the world the stuff the people are made of beyond the media propaganda of some journalists who choose to only paint the country with the ugly brush. We are all winners in this election and the task is now to reunite and rebuild the socio-political fabric that the winds of politics seem to have ruffled a bit.

The new face of the National Assembly

The National Assembly election has thrown up many new faces but there are two remarkable individuals that one had looked forward to their success at the polls. One is Ben Murray Bruce, the Chairman of the Silverbird Group who won a Senatorial seat in Bayelsa state and Iyom Uche Ekwunife in Anambra state.

A Ben Murray Bruce is one Nigerian that has paid his dues in the country and is famous for his dedication to duty and the patriotic zeal that has pushed him into the subconscious of most Nigerians. His time in the Senate would provide some content to the hallowed chambers that often have representatives who add no value to the legislative process of our democracy.

He is seen as a man with huge dreams and it would be interesting to see how his wealth of knowledge and exposure can be of benefit to the legislative arm. He is going there more prepared than any average politician on this clime.

Iyom Uche Ekwunife has been remarkable as a member of the House of Representatives. To have defeated two male political giants in Anambra state like Chief Victor Umeh of APGA and former  governor and former Senator Chris Ngige of the APC is testimony to the that she has been a good representative of her people for them to upgrade her from the lower to the upper Chamber of the national Assembly.

The failures and successes of most candidates in this election are all very instructive. The people are now taking better interest in the productivity of politicians whether at the legislative or executive level.

As our democracy grows, we would quietly and steadily be having the upper hand in the choice of leadership. The people are the major beneficiaries because for so long, they have been denied their dues. We await a National Assembly that would be optimally productive to the benefit of the mandate givers. Congrats to all winners.


Espying with Nnedi Ogaziechi,, 08056180164 (SMS only).