Ghali Na’abba Blames Politicians For Political Violence

Ghali Na'abba Blames Politicians For Political ViolenceA former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Ghali Na’abba has appealed to politicians to embrace dialogue in order to reduce the increasing cases of political violence in the country.

Addressing participants at the 2017 National Political Summit in Abuja, where Nigerian democracy, constitutionalism and leadership recruitment paradigm was the focus.

Na’abba condemned the political development in Edo and Ondo governorship elections and the parliamentary rerun elections in Rivers state, and criticized politicians who go to the polls as if they were at war.

The former speaker said that Nigeria as a nation was founded on dialogue and asked the political class to consolidate on the gains of the nation’s founding fathers.

He said: “With the recent happenings in our political development especially the governorship election in Edo and Ondo and the legislative elections in Rivers state, can we say we are indeed making progress? It seems to me that people still contest elections as if it is a war that must be won or we perish.”

Na’abba was speaking in his capacity as the acting chairman of the governing council, Save Democracy Group Africa.

The chairman of the summit and former governor of Edo state, Oserheimen Osunbor, called for the enthronement of the rule of law.

“Democracy cannot thrive if the constitution is not right or if we are not respecting our constitution and respecting the rule of law,” he said.

The convener of the summit and Director General of Save Democracy Group Africa, Dr. Ifedi Okwenna, enumerated the essence of the national political summit.

It is to develop elite consensus on political and governance issues and promote tolerance to alternative view points and dialogue among stakeholders.

The three-day summit is expected to among other issues examine constitutional development options for sustainable democracy in Nigeria, political leadership recruitment and internal democracies in political parties.

Electoral Act Must End Political Cross Carpeting – Tanko

Yinusa TankoThe Chairman, Inter Party Advisory Council, Yinusa Tanko, believes that the recognition given to the idea of cross carpeting by politicians should be expunged from the Electoral Act.

Speaking on Channels Television, he noted that the lack of laws that would stand the test of time had been the reason why the Nigerian political system had lost its values.

He wondered why any politician should be allowed to trade the trust given to him by the people with another party that they did not support.

Tanko revealed that the discussions at the recently held National Political Summit bordered on issues concerning all political parties, including that of cross carpeting. He noted that if the recommendations are well adopted, it would bring sanity to the system.

He disclosed that the major step needed after the summit was to ensure that the next Electoral Act does not allow any elected politician to cross carpet into another party.

How much influence a political party has on the success of the candidate also came to the fore, as it is believed that some persons boost the party’s chances by their popularity rather than being helped by the party to win elections.

Tanko insisted that the candidate was bound by the political party he contested on and could only ride on his personal popularity on the platform of another party. This was after sharing the view that Nigeria was not yet mature for independent candidature.

He also believed that political parties would be able to agree on putting an end to the issue of cross carpeting as the issue has not favoured any of the political parties and it had become important for all the parties to jointly work against it.

Tanko said that his party the NCP would not accept any candidate from another party; no matter how popular he is, as long as he is occupying an office under his party.

“What is wrong is wrong”, he said, noting that his party was built on strong values.

He explained that the IPAC was a common front where parties discuss internal issues and there were plans to come up with ways of calling political parties with disciplinary issues to order.

This, according to him, includes utterances made by politicians, stating that issues of education, housing and development should form the core content of their public statements. While admitting that politicking had a place in contests, he advised that such should be based on developmental issues.

He revealed that the organisation embarked on this campaign in Anambra State leading to the governorship election to sensitize the people about what to pay attention to but could not do same in Ekiti due to certain constraints.