Issues

THE WAY OUT OF NIGERIA’S PROBLEMS AND THE REAL REASON FOR TENSION AMONG THE TRIBES OF NIGERIA

Upon the founding of Nigeria and the heroic struggle of our founding fathers, Nigeria became an independent state in 1960. Regrettably, Nigerians have suffered political and economic captivity, tyranny and dictatorship-of -sort and high handedness in governance by some of her sons and daughters entrusted with leadership positions at all levels. The consequential effects of repression is hunger, unemployment, non-development of communities and rural areas, failed health care, failed economy , failed education, failed housing, insecurity, dichotomy,  poor sanitation, no water , no light, destruction of the local governments, unpaid salaries, unpaid gratuities, unpaid pensions, corruption, kidnapping, rape, assassination, armed robbery,etc. This is the reason for the tension.

Nigeria in 1978 and 1998 on its transition to civil rule process created the 1979 and 1999 constitution respectively, and tailored it to the American presidential system of government and to the constitution of the United States of America. The American constitution is based on the “people” a principle of equality of all men, a new type of republic government, based on the representation of the people, by the people… a government of “constitutional supremacy”. For Nigeria, and like some other country’s,  the constitution has undergone and still undergoing several amendments.

The Nigerian  constitution  presupposes the complete restitution of all political powers to the people, with a subsequent redistribution of certain powers to the federal government and certain powers to the states and local government, the powers both from the federal government, the state and local governments, are acknowledged as power from the people..

The people’s constitution provides vertical separation of powers. The purpose of the  constitution is to distribute the authority of governmental services to the various levels where a particular function could be most administered efficiently at the most economical cost. The vertical separation of powers among the states might be portrayed as follows:

  1. The states
  2. The  local governments
  3. The ward/ communities
  4. The families
  5. The individuals

The way to have good and safe government is not to trust it all on one, but to divide it among the many, distributing to everyone exactly the function he is competent to. The founders of America said “it is not by consolidation or concentration of powers, but by their distribution that good government is effected”. Each state was divided into counties{local government}each to take care of what lies within its local bounds; each county again into townships or wards, to manage the minuter details; and every ward into farms , to be governed each by its individual proprietor …..It is by this partition of cares, descending in gradation from the federal to the individual, that the mass of human affairs may be best managed for the good and prosperity of all.

Thomas Jefferson, who wrote the constitution, said “The article nearest to my heart is the division of counties to wards.These will be pure and elementary republics, the sum of all which, taken together, composes the state, and it will make of the whole true democracy as to the business of the wards, which is that of nearest and daily concern. The affairs of the larger sections, of counties, of states, and of the federal government, not admitting personal transactions by the people, will be delegated to agents elected by themselves and representations will thus be substituted where personal action becomes impracticable. Yet even over these representative organs, should they become corrupt and perverted, the division into wards constituting the people….a regularly organized power, enables them by that organization to crush, regularly and peaceably, the usurpation of their unfaithful agents, and rescue them from dreadful necessity of doing it insurrectionally. In this way we shall as republican as a large society can be, and secure the continuance of purity in our government by salutary, peaceable, and regular control of the people”

The total sum of government structure in the United -States is four (4) tiers from the federal government, the states, the local governments and the city government, whereas in Nigeria it is three (3) funding steps, i.e three tiers, namely federal government, state government and Local government rather than four (4) tiers government, if they include the ward/community. We believe the total sum of the state’s funding steps should also be three (3) tiers, namely the state government, the local government and the township or ward government, while the local government should maintain two (2) funding steps , that is the local government and the ward/community government.

In Nigeria, our findings amongst other things show that the singular most important reason for the non-development of the rural areas is the failure of the state governments refusal to implement and fund the wards/communities, as required by the presidential system of government, but has continuously ran the centralized system of government in the administration of the State structure in Nigeria, in-spite of its destruction of the entire country.

The Nigerian constitution far from prohibiting,  failed to specifically distribute powers down to the wards/communities and take the administration thence to every man’s farm by himself thereby placing under each one what his own eye may superintend, then would all have done their best. It is not by the consolidation or concentration of powers by the state government, but by their distribution that good government is effected, where every state and local government give powers and resources to the various wards/community governments, that each might do for itself what concerns itself directly in a state development plan. Most wards/community governments can do so much better than a distant state authority. It is by this decentralization of Government that human affairs may be best managed for the good and prosperity of all in this great country.

The ward/community governments are pure and elementary republics, autonomous wards/ communities if  taken together compose the state. It is this that will make a true meaning of democracy to the daily concerns of the ordinary Nigerian. If any leader does not mind who takes the credit he can do so much for the people when he decentralizes his powers and or functions.

For the tension is among the masses in the Arewa states as it is among the masses in the West, the East, and the South-South.The tension is the symptom of hunger and deprivation across the land. Any restructuring, therefore, must have as its primary objective the elimination of hunger and deprivation in our land as much as possible.This is what affects the nearly 200million Nigerians, leave out the nearly 1% in control of the  economy.

Yet, our distress comes not from non-availability of resources, but from the wrongful application of ample resources at every level.

We have still much to be thankful for, nature still offers her bounty of crude oil, plenty at our door step, but happiness lies not in the crude reserve we have; it lies in the joy of selling it in exchange for commensurate value. Emerging technologies and control by world super powers has shrunken crude oil market demand and price. The consequence of  crude oil price crash to a fantastic free fall is  the unprecedented rise in foreign exchange rates and terrible devaluation of our currency in recent times which has over-stretched the pockets of citizens already in a recessive economy gradually sliding to full blown depression, by the evidence of the pockets of Nigerians and the grumblings. Plans have been set in motion in some parts of Europe to phase out the use of petrol and diesel vehicles in the next few years in favour of electric cars. Petrol and diesel cars will be obsolete in North America in the very near future. Sincerely, time and tide is not on our side. Let us not be deceived by the recent fluctuations in the price of oil, we all know it is due to world tension and will soon be short lived.

TWO LIKELY QUESTIONS ANSWERED

Participants in every discourse must be patient to listen and learn from the other side therefore let us consider at least two of the possible arguments or questions that will be thrown up against the institution of the Ward/community system of government we so strongly advocate.

First, the issue of setting up a tier of government in the states without express constitutional provision could be raised. In answer, let it be made clear, that an Appropriation law that provides distribution of resources in favour of wards /communities or areas within local governments of a state or by the National Assembly regarding the Area councils of Abuja for support, infrastructure, administration and industrialization etc is completely legal and enough to institute and run the ward/community government since there is neither express nor implied prohibition in the constitution. Avoiding being didactic as legal gymnastics must  be left to the appropriate arena suffice it to say that we need to only look at Lagos and Bayelsa states that have been funding and operating administrative areas created by their respective legislative houses.

Second, it may also be argued especially that another set of looters will now be entrenched at the community level hence, we should think of how to strengthen existing institutions and plead with the politicians to turn a new leaf. In answer, this argument is speculating about what may or may not happen under community government as against proven facts of looting, unemployment and under development for nearly 60 years under a system of which we are all witnesses. Further, the audacity with which funds are brazenly carted away at the federal, state and local government levels cannot be attempted in most communities of this country.

It is a hard task and bad business to steal community funds. Certainly, you cannot claim using N50,000 to buy a pack of toothpicks in any community whereas that will be routine at the federal, state and local governments because the funds at those centres lack the essential quality of ownership by an identifiable  and tangible group. There is an ocean of difference between the funds of Odigbo Local Government Area and that of Odigbo community. What harm do we suffer if we reduce the funds governors play with by creating community administrative centers for the execution of projects? Non. In any case, since we have a proven failed system, why not try the alternative that holds so much promise with examples of success around the globe? We should. In the worse scenario, we would be dealing with Lilliputian looters with mole hill size loots to be promptly dealt with by the EFCC unlike present day Gulliveran looters with Mt Everest size loots that confound, intimidate and overwhelm the Police, ICPC and EFCC combined.

WARD/COMMUNITY GOVERNMENT ;  THE SURE ROUTE TO GROWTH, DEVELOPMENT AND PROSPERITY

It is preposterous to suppose that the Governor at the state  capital can better understand the wants and wishes of the people than their own immediate people who are living, driving, spending time, often laboring with them and bound to them by the triple tie of — interest, duty and affection!

This system of governance set the pattern for what was to come in the developed countries, like the USA, the Republic system of the division of states into counties and wards, and in Britain, a parliamentary system divided into boroughs and councils. By this system  cities were developed and urbanized, citizens –so gigantic of a people –prosperous and happy.

Nigerians deserve better from those to whom they entrust the nation’s highest offices and we stand united in our resolve to do something about it.

Political development history of western nations show that successful governments place trust not in one person or one party but in those values that transcend persons.

PLIF is telling Nigerians our State governments must operate the “compact system” of triple governing levels — city/community government, the local government and the state government by having a decentralized system of government to wit:

  1. fiscal decentralization
  2. administrative decentralization
  3. security decentralization

Nearly sixty years is gone. The time, is now to say goodbye to the Nigerian “style” of Presidential system of government along with its inability to equitably distribute dividends of democracy and development of our cities and rural areas simultaneously; breeding unemployment, high crime rate and poverty being negative precipitates of broken politics which has propagated rivalry, hate, discord, tribalism, and mutual-suspicion among ethnic groups and communities.

“Trust me ” leaders ask, we concentrate our hopes and dreams on  them to do what’s best for us, the responsibility to live up to the trust is where the trust belong.

It is time to acknowledge and incorporate the ward/community Government  as a ward/community –Government  Administrative center  or authority fashioning a structure of compact triple system of government in each state, only then can we proudly claim to run the true presidential system of government.

We have seen it — we have felt it — all over the world – in big cities, the small towns and rural America and Britain, there are developments every where; the beauty and conformity of city appearances in roads, houses, schools, pharmacy, are replica in layout and design across each state, City or Council. This attainment was possible because the State government produces a prototype city design and the local and city governments implement to specifications, model and plans. Let’s do what has to be done, no time is too belated to amend, rectify or right our mistakes, misunderstandings, omissions or oversight. The presumed naivety, hopelessness and frustration of our innocent citizens should not be taken for granted!

In the essence of true federalism and institution of the Presidential system of government, the practice of sharing state revenue to the city/community government is the surest route to growth, development and prosperity. We searched for the rationale that inspired this system of government and our findings show first, the desire to have equality of communities and a Government adequate to every purpose for which the social compact is formed; not to cause discord , none to put at variance of one community with another. Nations with that system of Government enjoy citizens support and the citizens enjoy development and prosperity.

The community government is elective world-wide, such, then being highly favored, it is in the interest of every citizen to maintain it. It’s magnificent success are accelerated grassroots development, security and prosperity.

In view of the advantages and the need for quick development of our rural areas, the Government that embraces the concept of community government would cause the heart of every citizen to expand with joy. How near our government will be with the people, all communities having the opportunity–developing it’s villages and inner-cities to suburban and municipal heights.

Such a system of government is almost indispensable of citizens support. Life in rural areas will be irresistible, inviting and charming. The States will have several urban cities, and the overcrowded cities will be decongested. Our citizens will enjoy lower cost of rents and a reduction in the cost of living.

For nearly sixty years, community development funds have been frittered into private purses. Lucky dippers are “kings and queens” having ten square meals, their guard dogs well fed while citizens live in excruciating pain and poverty.

“The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the things. He is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things”

“There is no limit to the amount of good you can do if you don’t care who gets the credit”

” Never let the things you cannot do stop you from doing what you can do”

Nigeria’s practice of federalism without functional community/ward/city governments is a half-baked one. Community /ward/city government is the most important component of the overall structure of not only the presidential system but also in a parliamentary system that seeks even development like the United Kingdom. The system does not need any amendment to the constitution, though desirable, the provision is implied, it is up to the state and local governments to operate it for the public good.

Democracy depends for its livelihood on meaningful contacts between the people and the government.

The ward/community government achieves the following,

(a)Involves the people in governance,

(b)Acting as oversight instrument on government institutions and infrastructures in the ward or community,

(c)Initiation of policies and plans for the development and management of resources and institutions in the community/ward.

The absence of the foundation level and key component of government (ward/community) is the bane of development in Nigeria including the current problem of cattle herdsmen and farmers, an example of a very local and rural challenge assuming national discourse and dislocation, a most unfortunate occurrence.

The states should introduce community/ward/city system of government and distribute powers and resources accordingly. The Ward/Community/City government involves the people in governance. Harmonization, implementation and monitoring committees should be set up at the State and LGA levels with members representing each community or ward as the case may be. We can have ward governments made up of one or more communities and town or city governments made up of multiple wards. The focus is mainly grass root government for community development. Sharing from the common revenue pot to the Ward/Community Government, guarantees simultaneous grass root development, a (DIY) do it yourself government. Bottom-top management approach.

The states and LGAs must Fund the Ward/Community government as follows:
35% of the revenue from the federation account to the State (under all headings), shared by the state directly to the Ward/Community government.
35% of the internal generated fund(IGR) to the state should also go to the Ward/Community government
65% of local government allocation from the federation account should also be shared to the ward/community governments within each  local government.
35% of Local government internal generated revenue should also be shared to the ward/community governments.

The funding of the Ward/Community governments will take into account parameters of equality, population, landmass and derivation in the distribution of revenue.
It bears repetition that there is no way a governor  sitting in a government house can know the state of disrepair of roads and other infrastructure within all the communities in a state on time; even a one city State like Lagos will still present its challenges. This is the reason why the communities are under developed since the governors have to wait for petitions complaining about the need, decay or disrepair of the infrastructure and by the time the red tape is done the road or infrastructure has failed completely. However, the Ward/Community governments can easily construct and maintain roads and other infrastructures within their respective jurisdictions as the need arises or event occurs. The funds are domiciled within the jurisdiction. Thus a one inch crack in a road can be fixed before it deteriorates to swimming pool size.

Intercity roads will be maintained by local governments while inter local government roads will be by the State even though the roles of the state and LGA will be greatly reduced if not nonexistent from a practical point of view.

There should be established functional ward/community/Council offices fully staffed with technical and administrative personnel .This bold step will create functional wards and local governments; state ministry’s now performing more of supervisory oversight functions.
The State governments must ensure Budgeting, and projects are guided by the State development plan with the State office coordinating what each tier of Government will embark on yearly, but the implementation and funding must be at community government level.

BUDGETING

The State Governments must Review Budgetary plans and method with a view to have three layers of budgeting to avoid duplication and proper accountability,

(A)Ward/Community/city budgeting

(B)Local government budgeting.

(C) State government Budgeting.

State Budget harmonization, implementation and monitoring committee, must be created with members representing each local government. The state must establish Local government Budget ,harmonization, implementation and monitoring committees with members representing each community or ward as the case may be.

What is probably more important is the principle behind the budget. If we decide as a people to move forward, then we must put our policy objective as the principle upon which the budgets are prepared.

. We are by this budget system showing the feasibility of funding for the community governments that will develop our communities to urban cities within 4 years.

This method of allocation will enable us, using the state development plan, to identify projects that will be executed in all the wards and communities in the States simultaneously without depriving any community of development. In case  a project is beneficial  or cuts across several local governments or wards, then funds from such local governments or cluster of wards may be pulled together to deliver on the project with knowledge of the people that they have benefitted.

Oloibiri is forgotten today, her oil gone. No LGA or community should be made to perpetually wait while a few are being developed when it is very possible for all to develop simultaneously.

It should be understood that to cry and spend money on security without taking urgent steps to industrialize the states and provide employment to the teeming youths is like pouring drops of water on a hot fry pan. The security challenge will not abate. That is why the state budgets must appropriate specific sums to be spent on direct investment or in partnership or as guarantees  to bank verified business plans which only challenge is lack of collateral by entrepreneurs in all the local government areas of each state.

TAXES:

We must review the tax payment formula, remitting :

50% to the state.

15% to the host local government or governments

35% to the host ward/community government.

Taxes must be paid at one time into the three tiers of government simultaneously with three (3) envelopes or cheques or transfers without any interference from the State to the local government or the Local government to the community. Independent remittances will make a better meaning of decentralization.

Does it surprise you that our solution to Nigeria’s problems is not what you expect to hear? Well we are coming from the very foundation  of democracy, and the sole reason representative government was introduced to Moses in exodus chapter 18, Moses conducted the very first elections in the world and established the very  first representative government described as” ancient principles”. In the confusion of which type of government to adopt after the United States spent one-hundred and eight years (180)  experimenting on the best form of Government to create, According to  Jefferson, as descendants of the Anglo-Saxons,  it was considered to continue with the Moses type of representatives Government   Which they considered was better with a purpose  to disperse power from the top to bottom for aggressive and equitable development. Thus, America has a four(4) tier National government and a three (3) tier  state government, the reason is every body is a native of a ward/community of which he or she has a triple tie interest to, i .e interest, affection and duty, and it is these  interests and love for their parents   that is the driving force on the people in developing their communities, this principle of government has succeeded and made America a foremost country. Nigeria in a bid for democracy adopted the American Presidential system of government  and has also attempted to disperse power to the grassroots but got it wrong by limiting the constitution to the Local Government (county) which is a no mans land, except a few that is a one city/ town Local government without expressly defining the Ward/community government which is the nucleus and the most crucial level of government,  where the individual and families reside. This omission may appear inconsequential, but unfortunately, it is the crux of the underdevelopment  which creates the tension everywhere.  

Nigerians  in the open or in their angry isolation usually ask ” what is wrong with Nigeria? or why can’t Nigeria Progress? the answer is what we are providing in a very simple way. And when this anomaly is corrected, which of course does not require any constitutional amendment all Nigerians and indeed the whole world would see the unimagined  opportunities,  and more windows will now be open to the various communities to set up industries based on the raw materials readily available within their respective areas as well as other viable economic ventures either alone  or in partnership.

Believe it,  if a directive is given that all Community governments should establish a poultry or fish farm, as an example, it will be executed immediately and simultaneously. The States will now, in the main, concentrate on the economy and industrialization. Thus, employment will be stimulated and frayed nerves calmed. This is what we should do now and the tension in the land will be no more.

We are aware that many people think it is fashionable to talk about restructuring at this time. At a time when the Revenue and Fiscal Mobilization Commission is laboring to put forward amendments to the revenue sharing formula, let this be the opportune time to provide succour to the impoverished masses of this country and the industrialization of our communities by considering seriously the distribution of 10% of the distributable revenue of the federation direct to the Wards/ communities to support and persuade the states towards adopting the community system of government. The states should be contented with the 24% and the local governments with 20%. The Federal Government should put in place arrangements to enable it disburse 10% out of its 56% to the wards .

We the members of the Peoples life improvement foundation have come to the conviction of the need for an intervention into the Nigeria Political landscape, to find solutions in moving the country forward.

We have observed with frustration as office holders at the various tiers of government nationwide have displayed attributes of “Rulership” and instituted Rulers Law instead of the people’s law for which our constitution was fashioned. The result is the degradation of governance to a state of terror and rule of tyranny of sort, is the anarchy we see in the nook and cranny of Nigeria. Our office holders are not servants but proprietors of the people they swore to govern in such a way that Nigerians are treated as “subjects” of the “rulers” and the land as the “realm” of the “rulers”.

Our inalienable rights are no more.

Government is by the rule of men rather than the rule of law.

Our people have been structured into social and economic classes.

The thrust of our governments especially in the states are always from the ruler down, not from the people upward.

The governments are imposing on the poor people more oppressive taxes, to enrich further the pockets of government appointees.

Those in power revel in luxury while the lot of the common Nigerian is one of perpetual poverty, kidnapping, murder and continuous existence in misery.

The evils we experience from Governors  do not proceed from minute or partial imperfections, but from fundamental errors of their misunderstanding of the structure of the State government in the constitution.

This unusual and uncommon form of governments in Nigeria has the attributes of all the rejected forms of government. In political science, producing a grotesque combination of monarchy, autocracy, plutocracy, aristocracy, oligarchy and dictatorship creating empires for people otherwise elected thereby plunging the Nigerian state into anarchy of sort resulting to:

  1. The recent voluntary self-offer for slavery abroad by young and energetic Nigerians in the 21st century.

b.The recent vociferous agitations for restructuring of Nigeria in the various geo-political zones.

  1. The fiscal failure of the economy in the lives of hundreds of millions of individuals, tens of millions of families, tens of thousands of Communities, hundreds of local governments, several states and the Federal Government of Nigeria.
  1. The insecurity of lives and properties in almost the thirty-six (36) states of Nigeria and Abuja.

THE NEED FOR INTERVENTION

When a democratic government becomes destructive to its people, it is the right of the people to alter, change and institute a new government, laying its foundation on such democratic principles that shall affect their safety, happiness and economic wellbeing, here comes the necessity for a National rescue movement.

EXPECTATIONS:

The peoples life improvement foundation is calling on all Nigerians to join hands with them,coming together to save Nigeria.

The foundation membership is open to all Nigerians from all walks of life.  Our expectations as co-patriots is to come together and study properly the true meaning of the Presidential system of government and make the necessary amends for the good of our people, salvaging for them liberty and happiness. We as patriots must give to Nigerians a sound government based on the following principles:

  1. Self-evident truths. These truths should be so obvious, so rational and so morally sound.
  2. The equality of all Nigerians in their right, equality before the law and equality at sight (of course, individual attributes and personal circumstances vary widely)
  3. That Nigerians are assured of protection by the government of their right to life, right to liberty, and the right to pursue whatever course of life a person may desire in search of happiness, so long as it does not invade the inherent rights of others, in which every community, city, local government or state in Nigeria.

 

IMMEDIATE AREAS OF REVOLUTIONS TO RE-DIRECT THE ECONOMY.

For any meaningful progress to be made in redirecting the country to living a civilized age,  we must declare revolutions to very vital areas such as:

INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION: To establish efficient factories nation-wide with a view to produce and obtain our basic needs in quantity and cheaper. It must be affordable by majority of Nigerians on the minimum wage baseline .

SECURITY REVOLUTION: To fight crime honestly, we must provide jobs and people earn to live, only then we can prevent crime. We must appreciate the fact that Nigerians are stretched beyond the elasticity that they can accommodate financially. When able bodied men and women willing to work are unable to obtain work, they may steal before  they starve to death.  This is the ugly truth before us, so we must tackle the basic crime that are induced by bad government and differentiate  from heavy blooded criminals and terrorism which is common to any society. Effective  policing can only be achieved when the greater number of persons live happily.

TRANSPORTATION REVOLUTION:  We must address the issue of local, inter and intra city/states transportation. We must Re-establish a Nigerian based Air travel transportation system, Railway development and safe highways across the country.

COMMUNICATION REVOLUTION: We must be abreast with fast changing communications development, which has developed the planet from a community of Nations into a vast, global neighborhood. It is quite worrisome that Data,Voice and video is almost unaffordable, the NCC needs to regulate the cost of triple play bundle not exceeding a maximum of N500 per-month. The operators must operate the bill to keep theory as obtainable in most parts of the world.

ENERGY REVOLUTION: We must have a revolution into the energy resource, and create stable, safest, cheapest, and most abundant energy resource for all. Cheap energy will raise the Nigerian standard of living to make gigantic leap from our present standard of bare-survival. 

EDUCATION REVOLUTION: We need educational revolution,  as we are emerging to an era of computer revolution and making machines “ think” and “act” our oil based economy’s end is in sight, and the country is gasping for breath. The development of science and technology is the key to our survival in the 21st century.

AGRICULTURAL REVOLUTION: A revolution into agriculture must be decentralized to the community level.  Having  the individual, community, local government, states and federal  government to collaborate their efforts to create abundant food supply. The food must be cheap and affordable   taking into consideration people earning below the minimum wage level. The issue of federal government encouraged and supported investment on preservation of agricultural harvest is very necessary in all the 36 states, and the 774 local governments areas in the federation.

HOUSING REVOLUTION: A deliberate housing policy geared towards an affordable policy for all Nigerians, We must encourage a mortgage policy and also a general credit system nationwide especially for the low income and middle class in all the states  of the federation, taking into consideration that everyone rich or poor must have a home and it must be affordable, we must always consider and appreciate that there is a difference in the level of prosperity of individuals even if they where born on the same day or classmates, which is as a result of so many factors.

HEALTH REVOLUTION: A complete overhaul of our health system , working with all tiers of government and the private sector. We must recognize the disparity of our individual economy and consider that since all human beings are  not blessed equally in all matters, our country must work towards bridging the gap between the rich and the poor,  without compromising quality and efficiency. We must act with the principle of everyone matters, and we as a people rich or poor we deserve better.

PROSPERITY ECONOMICS must be our operative focus. Our country needs to operate the principle of free market society also sometimes called prosperity economics. This allows the  four fundamental economic freedoms:

1. The freedom to try

2. The freedom to buy

3. The freedom to sell

4. The freedom to fail

The  government has a duty to intervene and regulate the economy, when there is an attempt to  unduely exploit, monopolize and criminally  invade the market fraudulently. Certainly,  not the situation where illegal refineries produce adulterated petroleum products without subsidy, and government petroleum and energy resources organizations subsidize  petroleum products which makes it unaffordable for a people whose minimum wage is N30,000. Until we develop a free market system in all the sectors, we may not be able to  produce cheaper cloths, better and cheaper homes, cheap of everything to reduce the cost of living and increase the standard of living.

CORRUPTION IN GOVERNMENT AND IT’S NEGATIVE CONSEQUENCES.

Corruption is an evidence of failure of government and economics by those trusted with authority.   The failure of the electoral system had created room for  wrong persons  who at best was seeking for employment to feed their families are now entrusted with public resources, which they abuse their offices and plunder the treasury for private use. Failed electoral process births dictatorship and disregard of democratic values, the characteristics of flawed elections are the failures we see in our government system. Some of which are: 

1 Government power is exercised by compulsion, force, legislative usurpation, compromised judiciary

2 Therefore, the Head of Government believes all powers is concentrated on the ruler.

3 The people are treated as subjects of the ruler.

4 Government is by the rule of men rather than the rule of law.

5 The people are structured into social and economic classes, each struggling to attain or maintain a standard of living which can not be supported by their wages or earnings. This instability creates the tension in the economy that promotes the corruption we see today.

6 The transfer of power from one government to another is often by violence-the dagger, the poison cup or fratricidal civil war of sort.

7 Freedom is no more guaranteed for citizens, therefore freedom is no more solution for problems.

8 The people in power revel in luxury while the lot of the common people is one of perpetual poverty.

9 Levying of Draconian  taxes  and levies to increase the internal generated revenue of the government at the states or federal level without considering the pain on the masses.

IMPORTANCE OF MAINTAINING HORIZONTAL SEPARATION OF POWER IN DEMOCRACY

If the three powers (i.e legislative, executive and judiciary ) maintain their mutual independence(of) each other, our government may last long; but not so if either can assume the authorities of the other.

Checks and balances correct peacefully the usurpation or abuse of power. If men were angels no government will be necessary. If angels were to govern men , neither external nor internal controls in government would have been unnecessary. These checks  and balances were required to cope with the frailty of human nature. Our country’s experience is enough to serve as a lesson for us to respect the principles  of separation of powers. It is said that the people have the right to regain the control of power whenever necessary, however, in Nigeria, the continuous strangulation of the people by the rulers has made that statement a mere rhetorics.  From the nature of man , we may be sure that those who have power in their hands and misusing it to the detriment of the masses will never give it up while they can retain it. On the contrary they will rather try to usurp the functions of other powers just to act “GOD”.

Is this our  country we live in? To deepen our democracy and for the  good of all,  we deserve a better deal. We must be guided by the principles of ” Everyone matters”. An electoral integrity would give birth to Leadership integrity, which is the key to Nigeria’s democratic and socio-economic development. All hands must be on deck to promote, protect and defend the integrity of the electoral process and the elections in the country.

“Free and Fair Elections are the Foundation of every healthy Democracy “.