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2023: A good time to shun ethno-religious politics

2023: A good time to shun ethno-religious politics

The history of the Nigeria politics has always be littered with ethnic, religious and other inconsequential variables. Build up to elections usually brings to the fore what divides us as a nation instead of what that can bring development to the nation.

As 2023 general election is gathering momentum, the ugly ace usually played by both the politicians and electorates alike has resurfaced. Just last week, the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN), issued a statement that warned political parties against attempts to field candidates from religion as President and Vice President. One thing that quickly come to mind was the fact the we have jettison merit to nepotism in choosing our political office holders.

Just in the same vain, some civil society organizations are clamouring for southern president with disregard for any meritorious values. The only thing they concerned themselves about is the zone or tribe to produce the president.

Let us trace back in time to the beginning of this republic, Obasanjo, a southerner was the president for eight years between 1999-2007 to what benefits was his regime to his south west brethren? Is it bad road or dilapidated infrastructure in the region? Even the region benefited more from Buhari than from Obasanjo.

Jonathan presidency is another reason why we have jettison the ethnic-religious sentiments whenever we are choosing our political office holders, it was the same story with Obasanjo’s presidency. His region was not developed by him as money budgeted for development were massively looted to personal pockets of his cronies.

Now to Buhari presidency, What has the north benefits from Buhari presidency? It is the same cry of poverty all over again. The insecurity that is only prevalent in the north east region has even worsen now and has spread to north west, though with another name; banditry. Even, president Buhari’s home-state is not left out of the palaver.

The insignificant things that have not taken Nigeria to anywhere is always the first card played by both the politicians and electorates alike. To what merit? Has our nation benefitted from such arrangement? The divides were psychological barrier to progress of our society.

The ideology is unhealthy and inconsistent with modern democratic practices. Going into 2023 election cycle, political parties should endeavour to use merit as the only consideration in selecting their candidates, instead of the usual use of ethnicity and religion which usually inflame passion for division. There is no better time than 2023 to put a stop to politicking along ethnic and religion lines which is widening the gulf of divisions in the country.

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2023 politicking should be based on merit and not the usual ethnic-religious platforms to ventilate on policy matters. What has our country gained from the ethnic-religious cards we have been brandishing about since our independence from Great Britain? Our leaders have always been selected based on the divides with the exception of June 12, 1993 annulled presidential election that featured Muslim-Muslim ticket.

If Christian-Christian or Muslim-Muslim ticket that is based on merit can bring progress to our nation, let us choose from the pools of professional from them. The caveat is that the ticket must be devoid of bigots if they are to be fielded in order to avoid what we are fighting against.

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