THE May 24, chairmanship election crisis of the Nigerian Governors Forum has indicated that Nigeria’s democracy is sick. The charges and counter-charges that characterised the election have made many Nigerians to question its relevance in the country’s democratic system. Many believe that the outcome of the election had shown that the future of democracy in the country does not hold any promise. Do you agree? Is the NGF relevant in our democracy? Below are what some Nigerians think on the issue.
Robinson Ajogwu, Accountant: To me, the Nigeria Governors’ Forum is an aberration in our democratic system. I agreed that the Nigerian constitution allows people to form associations and to associate at different levels whether at national, state or local government. It is counter-productive to the Nigerian people and the polity. It does not have the interest of Nigeria.
Charles Ezugwu, Banker: A lot of things are involved in as much as the NGF is concerned. We should first of all ask ourselves, how does the forum promote the interest of the Nigerian political system? What are the achievements since its inception? I see it as an executive umbrella for sharing our money. Tell me if in any of the states there are full blown infrastructures? What we have in the states are overwhelming social crimes. If the governors cannot use their mandate to solve these problems, then how relevant are they in tackling the socio-economic challenges confronting the nation? It is unfortunate that they are just in the NGF to share the spoils of office and looting the common wealth of the people.
Amaka Oti, Teacher: I think the forum is still a useful tool in our democracy. But political interest and greed appeared to have rendered it ineffective. These are some of the reasons that prompt the questioning of the whole essence of its existence.
Johnson Dieke, Administrator: Since the election and the controversy that followed it, I have been asking myself what is the relevance of the forum in our country? It seems to me that the forum has become a nuisance with all the scandals and irregularities associated with it. I think we don’t need the forum in our democracy.
Chukwuma Ejigionu, Civil Servant: The governors are of no use to the masses that elected them. They are there for their own selfish interests. It is there that they share national appointments. I have not seen anything good that the forum has brought to the people. Rather, the governors use the forum to dodge their responsibilities to the people. It was at the forum they agreed to remove fuel subsidy.
Peter Eze, politician: The NGF is very relevant to our democracy. Remember that every president and vice-president of this country since 1999, apart from Olusegun Obasanjo, is a product of the forum. Umaru Musa Yar’Adua was a governor before he became president, likewise President Goodluck Jonathan and his vice, Namadi Sambo. Even the next president will still be a product of the forum.
Compiled by Anayo Ezugwu
— Jul. 8, 2013 @ 01:00 GMT