If we could do it for presidential election, surely we should realise it is important to put the same efforts into electing local representatives as well.
This year has been full on for Nigeria elections from presidential, governorship to local representatives. On April 11th, there were yet another elections going on, for Osun state it was State Assembly elections. The roads were deserted as there were warnings that businesses should not open on election day. This ordinarily should translate to everyone needs to participate in the elections only that people did not as they really do not see the point as local elections are usually won by whoever has upper hand.
I wander round for hours. The common response from people was the fact that elections took too long of their day and the fact that they had done the same only 15 days prior for Buhari.
Now I realise in order to increase the number of people participating in elections then it must be a lot more friendly to voters. It is a bit too much to ask to wait around for up to 3 hours in the morning just to get accredited, and to be told to come back for another long waiting voting session later in the day.
It is one thing to bully people not to open up their businesses, it is a whole other story to get the same group of people to vote for the right person.
We call on the President to help on all sort of issues, but in reality, the President is in most cases far removed from the people hence it is important to elect someone we all know and trust to represent locally with the hope that local issues will get deserved attention.
Today, I read about fresh attacks in 3 Plateau villages whereby villagers were butchered in their sleep.
I called my niece to see if she was okay, not too surprising she has not heard about the killings and no one around her talked about it – this is within the same state.
Reading a bit more about the genesis of killing spree in Plateau state, it has striking similarities to many senseless killings going on around the country – fights over land ownership and from there escalated to religious and political killings.
Who is better to inform the general public about the truth of such atrocities than a trusted local representatives?
#BBOG has attracted sympathies from lots of people around the world, how I wish locally we can be concerned about needless shedding of blood in all of our regions enough for us to be interested in local elections. If the right people are in key positions, there is likelihood that peculiar local issues will get the right attention.
Very sad what is happening in Plateau state, probably will continue for many more months to come unless it bothers enough people to call government attention to it.