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25 Nov Written by  Japheth Omojuwa

Nigeria: Politics, Pettiness and Inanities

As a fan of American politics, it hurts at times when one realises that no matter how deep that particular interest goes, one will never be a direct participant. It is hard not to be enthralled by the ability of the politicians to always define their battles along the lines of issues, ideologies and the differing ideas of how they think their country should be run. Of course like in every country, they can descend into pettiness without exactly addressing issues, but when push comes to shove and you are made to take a look at the political scene, American politicians will always be seen to disagree on serious national questions, but only based on their sense of value and political ideology.

There will always be flip-floppers like Mitt Romney who will change their minds at the turn of each season of the year, and there will always be the likes of Rick Santorum who stick to their guns no matter how seemingly ridiculous their position may be. You'd find the Clintons mend walls with old adversaries because they probably see how such adversaries would come to be useful in the future, or they just prefer to see their party continues to hold on to power.

Politics will always be about interests: personal, party and national, but there are limits to how petty people can become in the name of wanting to hold to or annex power.

If politics in general were a toilet, Nigerian politics would be the dirtiest toilet in the world. It is just so different from what you see elsewhere, even on the continent. We are the ones to say we don't care where a leader comes from as long as they do the job well, but we are the ones to remind them that they are using their people's turn should they get on our nerves.

We are the ones to ignore the importance of the president's economic meetings in the United Kingdom and instead focus on whether he drank wine or he not. Since when has drinking become a determinant of the essence of a leader's worth or ability? Our politicians are the ones to demonize a political party and only months after travel the length, breadth and depth of the country looking to absorb whatever can be taken off the same entity we were made to believe was as good as useless.

Looking at the political scene, it is harder than ever before to differentiate what is what from who is who. The major political parties are just alike, safe for the fact that one has power and the other does not. This is emphasized in the sense that as soon as a party member falls out of reckoning in one party, his next line of action is often not about resolving the issue within that party but to evolve into a bride and become the attraction of the other party.

The line between the two main political parties i.e. APC and PDP is so thin that one cannot even say where some politicians belong. While this may look normal because abnormal things like this have become normal to us, it says everything about power in our country. As far as these goons are concerned, they just want power, and power not for the sake of service but for the sake of power itself.

We can do better. At the end of the day, politics that does not look to solve the people's problems in the cheapest, fastest and most effective way possible is not in anyway about the people. As long as this political process does not busy itself with issues of governance, we'd be fooling ourselves assuming we are indeed growing and evolving a democratic process.

As it is today, what are the issues that separate the PDP from the APC? Or is it only about the people within both entities and the desperation to oust President Jonathan? I am only asking.

Dog