By: Olamide Francis
It is laughable and pitiable that the Supreme Court election tribunal has to incessantly come to the aid of INEC by helping them clean up their electoral mess. The latest show of INEC’s incompetence is the sacking of the governor-elect of Bayelsa state, David Lyon, on account of fake certificates fielded by the deputy governor-elect. How long will this sacking of candidates continue on account of petty things such as school certificates? All those amounts budgeted by INEC for elections is a waste since they have continued to show such ineptitude.
I’m not even worried about the sacking of the APC candidate. I’m worried about how anyone will boldly contest election for such a high position with fake results. What’s the duty of the party’s screening committee? Does charity not begin at home again? Or is the APC home built on sinking sand?
With all the intellectuals in their national working committee, they cannot do a simple background check on their candidates? Or is it a culture peculiar to their party? Are they only just concerned with grabbing power at all cost without plans to make an impact? They lost Rivers and Zamfara due to the incompetence of this screening committee. Now, Bayelsa? That party is indeed a great one.
Well, if that was the case, they should have thought about it twice. No one can win an election in Nigeria with questionable results except Mr President. He holds that record and he’ll never share that glory with anybody. Unarguably, the anointing flows from the top.
But nawa o. They just spoiled the party for Mr Lyon. He has been rehearsing since last morning — under the hot sun — for what was supposed to be his big day today. From left and right, they’ve been hailing him “incoming governor!” and his head has been swelling like garri Ijebu. Supreme Court sef; all those marching under the sun in preparation for Friday’s swearing-in will now go in vain. Chai! All the aso-ebi his supporters bought; the fine clothes he bought for his wife and children; the joy in the air; all gone, just like that? So he will now be called “the governor Bayelsa never had”? O ma se o. They really tamed this ‘Lyon’.
But, things have gone south in this nation. Standards have been watered down and solidified at the same awful bottom. And, the citizenry is taken as fools. If not, candidates will not present fake certificates and expect to scale through INEC’s ‘rigorous process’.
The number of electoral cases before the Supreme Court is alarming and calls for questioning. What then is the job of INEC if electoral cases involving such petty aspects cannot be nipped in the bud before the elections proper? Could it be that INEC intentionally turns blind eyes to such cases? Or have they secretly received brown envelopes bigger than their responsibilities?
All of these political mess calls for a sober moment in Nigeria at large. Our electoral process is long dead and needs urgent resurrection. It has depicted little or nothing of the will of the people. Let’s not even talk about the nation at large; hasn’t it been habitable for all and sundry?