Usually, every New Year comes with lots of expectations and hopes but Elections years come differently as it with a unique and peculiar wave of apprehension that seemingly heightens the January fever occasioned by huge expenses of Christmas and New Year merriments.
However, this year’s election is distinct because the incumbent President General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), is not contesting as he is constitutionally completing two terms of eight years in office.
This nation has continued to face an escalated myriad of problems especially since the past seven and a half years, Buhari held swear as President. These challenges include continuously reducing standard of education, rising level of unemployment, pervasive poverty, widening insecurity, food scarcity, rising inflation, division along tribal and religious lines, increasing debt profile, fuel scarcity, excessive corruption and absolute maladministration among others.
The only hope for a positive change in the country is rapped on the fact that there will be a general election expected to replace the frustrating and suffocating Buhari’s administration on May 29, this year.
Obviously, no other activity in this Country consumes as much resources and time than politicking elections. The period and process have a lot evils encapsulated in it; from financial, spiritual to physical trauma.
Indeed, Nigerians pay so much for this aspect of democracy rituals. The one activity that makes time stand still in Africa is elections. Everything our politicians do by way of governance is either about preparing for the next election or undoing a previous election they have lost. Life itself is made to stop just for the sake of elections.
Of the 18 candidates contesting to become Nigeria’s next president, just one is female. But she, along with 13 others, does not have a realistic chance of winning. Most analysts agree that only four candidates – Bola Tinubu of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC); Atiku Abubakar of the main opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP); Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP); and Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) – can win or shape the destination of the presidency in February next year. They all know each other, and Nigerian politics, well.
Ordinarily, many Nigerians are of the view that the next President may not be able to cope with the national challenges considering the level of damages done on virtually all facets of the nation’s life; Health, Education, Petroleum Resource, Economy, Business, Aviation, Civil and Public Service and Security which adjudged by many as the worst hit, thus far.
The stakes of the 2023 election are high because the new president will immediately confront an exhausting array of challenges, from multiple and complex security crises to a disastrously mismanaged economy.
This year makes it 23 years since Nigeria got on the path of an uninterrupted cycle of civil rule yet Nigeria is filing far below her counterparts.
It is most painful that our politicians of this age have turned the spirit, tenets and structure of democracy to the highest opportunity for a masterful display of manipulations to outwit more decent players in the game of power, but Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) which is an electronic device designed to read Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) and authenticate voters, and the newly introduced electronic transmission of results will certainly change the dynamics this time.
Frankly, Nigeria is in the dungeon of turmoil, disorder, insecurity, ethnicity, and religious chauvinism because our leaders have used inordinate process to ride to power.
These perverted interests have prevented the most competent and rational characters from attaining to power and these have caused vulnerable Nigerians political, economic, and social mess. These ills have dragged the country far backward; Nigeria, needs a leader that can rise above petty religious and tribal sentiments.
Electing the nation’s leadership is up to Nigerian voters. It is also apt that serious attentions be given to other essential elections targets that will be impactful to Nigerians at certain levels such as representatives at the National Assembly comprising of the Senate and the House of Representatives.
The Senate consists of three senators from the states of Nigeria and one senator from the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja.
It is my prayer that Nigerians should drop their petty sentiments attitude and vote massively for a presidential candidate with credible and trusted antecedents, to redeem our country.