Politics and Policy

Unlike Duke, Why do Politicians not take themselves seriously?

With every passing day and each new improvisation in political comedy, Nigerian politicians continue to show they do not take themselves seriously and this is not about distinguished Senator Dino Melaye.

How else can the soon-to-be-registered party – Advanced Peoples Democratic Party – be reasonably explained to sane people without them feeling offended? Which advanced people, Nigerian Politicians? Advancing towards what exactly?

This development calls to mind a recent statement made by former Governor of Cross-River state, Donald Duke. In the Symposium organized by The Future Project for Young and Emerging Leaders also attended by Peter Obi and other persons like Japheth Omojuwa and Demola Olarewaju, a question was referred to Governor Duke as to why he has been silent in the political sphere since the end of his tenure in 2007.

As you would expect, his response was classic: “I take my self a bit seriously”. He further explained that he was not wired to be a motion-moving type of politician who would stand and sit on a green or red chair. Being a hands-on type of guy, he stated he was more suited to the Presidency, for which he has made an attempt previously. As a matter of fact, “I am not looking for a job”, the Governor said.

The question now to these politicians who jump from one type of carpet to another is this: what exactly informs the ideology of such parties? (This cannot the mega party we were promised, but that will slide for now). So there is the eloquent Dan Iwuanyanwu, former Chairman of the Labour party who left the party after Olusegun Mimiko, the only Governor Labour produced in his time, swerved to the PDP. There is also Raymond Dokpesi – a technocrat and big employer of labour – whose bid for the Chairmanship position of the PDP was not appreciated at all. Are they then trying to play by the Macron book by breaking with the establishment of the two major parties and putting up a credible alternative with a clearly defined path and promise other than ‘Change’?

Or is the formation of a party just an exercise in disgruntlement with the existing party system in Nigeria? Going by speculations, the APDA could be nothing more than an off-shoot Ahmed Makarfi-led faction of the PDP, some of whom were present at the launch of the party, according to the Premium Times.

There will be elections in about twenty months time, so we are approaching the season were political parties sprout like elephant grass on a wet corn field. There are 40 existing parties already, and APDA is one of 60 other groups seeking to be recognised by INEC as political parties. But can there not be a change in the ways these groups emerge as parties, for once? Can we not have serious politicians coming together for an ideal other than to express displeasure, for once? Do we, as the Nigerian people, not deserve to be taking seriously, providing a menu whose ingredients we can relate with, for once?


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