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DCP Abba Kyari: Deconstructing Public Service In Its Degenerate Mold



How To Revive Public Schools - Tunji Olaopa
Prof. Tunji Olaopa

Tunji Olaopa

The news in recent times has been agog with the tragic story about the rise and unfortunate fall of Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari. Known as the “supercop,” DCP Kyari used to be (or is it branded as) an exemplar of what a public servant should be, and especially one tasked with the responsibility of maintaining law and order in a country like Nigeria. This is significant. Nigeria is currently in a paroxysm of lawlessness, especially due to the challenge posed by non-state actors, from kidnappers to Fulani herdsmen, and from armed robbers to Boko Haram insurgents. These security challenges imply that a lot of expectations are heaped on the law enforcement agencies to perform their duties in keeping the state and citizens safe from lawlessness. Thus, as a “supercop,” DCP Abba Kyari was revered across the country and by his colleagues for upholding the fundamental values of law enforcement. But then, the bubble burst! Apparently, the lures of criminality were too overwhelming for the once diligent policeman. Success became an incentive not to tread the path of honour, but to be stupendously rich and therefore rise to societal revered outlier success zenith through an end justifies the means Machiavellian streak

The case of Abba Kyari is a scary one from an institutional point of view. We can ask whether the “supercop” represents a dominant species of public servants lurking in the corridors of service, or maybe he is just an aberration. If he is a manifestation of a degenerated public institution, how do we begin to rethink the public service that produced him, in a country poised to rededicate itself to the rule of law? I will like to take the unfortunate example of this fallen public servant as the moment to reflect on the state of the public service in Nigeria, and what is required to make it an institutional template for breeding diligent and ethical public servants that can adequately complement the functions of the state. This reflection speaks to a deeper worry about the relationship between the state of the nation, the driving force propelling the national economy and the state of her public service. We have a situation where, as a result of the humongous and obscene wealth that the political class and national elites display and adore even if with arrant sycophancy; the growingly degraded fortune of the Nigerian middle class, state capture, the unresolved Rich Man-Lazarus complex and eroded bases of inclusiveness; 90% of the nation’s wealth belong to less than 2% of the population, with being streetwise, criminality, yahoo-yahoo, cybercrime, money ritual expanding industry as the only viable alternative to hard work to gain entry into the exclusive world of the Nigerian brand of nouveau rich in a dynamic that our ideologically barren political class are clueless to confront with sufficiently deep problem-solving policy response. This being the existential reality constructed by the scary message that is constantly being sent over the years that hard work, meritocracy and diligence no longer count nor work as values to be cultivated, as well as the politics that the Nigerian nation plays with its destiny. Taken together, with a large and increasing youth unemployment, the Nigerian youths now find crime and criminality more fascinating than education. A large percentage even look into the murky realm of religious fundamentalism and its miracle mentality variant as the gateway, to boot.

One of the basic foundations of governance is laid on the axiom of a social contract between the government and the citizens. However, since the state is a mere abstract construct, it is made more concrete by its many functionaries whose responsibilities are to implement the policies of the state. The most significant of these functionaries are the public servants, especially those ensconced in the civil service core. It is in this sense that scholars of politics and administration have agreed that the public service is a necessary complement for the functional efficiency of the state, and especially of democratic governance in the twenty-first century. However, this functional efficiency that backstops democratic governance becomes jeopardized once the value foundation of the public service is eroded. In other words, in any democratic system, the successes or failures of any government—indeed the legacies of good leadership and the heroism of its public servants—is measured in terms of the extent to which government preserves the ethos of administration and the values of service. Thus, when we say that the public service is a calling or a vocation, it is with reference to the trajectory and framework of values and ethics that led to the founding of the profession.

READ ALSO: Abba Kyari’s Wife Slumps In Court At Husband’s Trial

When the Levites were chosen in the Old Testament of the Christian bible, it was essentially a sacred responsibility. Being chosen demanded that one must be motivated by sacred purpose and a sense of responsibility that moderated one’s life, actions and duties. It is precisely in this sense that the public service is also a calling in the trajectory of the priesthood in the Levitical Order. Public servants are “public priests” who keep the government connected to the citizens in administrative efficiency. It is therefore this inherent nature as a profession and instrument of the state that public service derived its classical formulation by Max Weber. The bureaucracy, for Weber, must be founded on the idea of a legal-rational authority which becomes legitimate by reason of its rules, regulations and principles. The rule-based logic of the bureaucracy not only conditioned it to be apolitical, but also circumscribed the actions of the public servants. Apart from the legal-rational configuration of the public service into a neutral, disciplined, and functional institution, Weber argued that honour is the core of the public service vocation. It is this ethical sense of honour that strengthens the effective technical performance of the state, and hence prevents the bureaucracy from collapsing upon the weight of its own activities. An honourable public official is the one who sees to the execution of a policy to the best of his ability, even if he disagrees with the policy choice.

Indeed, when the Nigerian civil service was inaugurated, the pioneers were able to initiate what is now regarded as the golden era of public administration and the public service in Nigeria because they imbibed the Victorian puritanical values of the twentieth century that undergirded the public service inherited from Britain. These pioneers manifested significant value orientations that demonstrated excellence and professionalism. For instance, they had the capacity to speak truth to power given that they had kept their hands off the public till. They were groomed around the fundamental value of delayed gratification that kept the concept of the public in their heart. To borrow Robbin Sharma’s title, these exemplary public servants were “leaders without titles.” They abided with the essential character of the public servant as an anonymous and silent game changer who works behind the scene of government decision-making machinery to get things done.

READ ALSO: NDLEA Writes Malami For Approval To Seize Billions In Kyari’s Bank Accounts, Other Assets

However, everything changed when Nigerian political elites began playing politics with her future. This bad politics is not only extractive, but provincial. It is the politics of ethnicity and godfatherism whose long-term consequences involve sidelining the scarce resources away from the sustenance of the values of the institutions that the state needs to function efficiently on behalf of democratic governance and the Nigerian citizens. It started with the adoption of the principle of representativeness at independence. And this principle overtook the efficiency of the workforce of the civil service with sheer over-bloatedness. And when a person at the helms of affairs employs a public servant on the basis of her ethnic identity rather than meritocratic credentials, the ethos of the public service is not only violated, the institution itself becomes weakened. The idea of state capture that has been researched in terms of governance also has devastating implications for the collapse of the administrative system. Prebendal interests and the rentier culture undermine performance and productivity.

It is essentially bad politics that generate the sociological negativities emerging from youth unemployment that leads Nigerian youths on a path of destruction—from financial and cybercrimes to money rituals. And all this, despite the great noise about anti-corruption as the foundation of good governance in the current political dispensation. These sociological negativities merge neatly with the public perception of government business as one that anyone can get appointed to, without any sense of merit or competence. Government work is government work, so most Nigerians think. It is a place of immense unproductivity. There is even news that Boko Haram “converts” are getting injected into the Nigerian armed forces. It is therefore anybody’s guess how such a blatant ideological cluelessness could serve as the basis of the renewal of the public service. We now have institutions that have become a reward zone for all sorts of elements, from former insurgents to incompetent family members, the streetwise, the highest bidders and political stooges.

READ ALSO: Buhari Will Decide Kyari’s Fate Over Deal With Hushpuppi – Minister

This politics deprived the public service of its capacity to modernize its operational and strategic capacity readiness. This essentially is at the root of Nigeria’s classification as a ‘hesitant reformer’. We are hesitant because the political class could not make up its mind about committing state resources to pushing the public service beyond its bureaucratic hindrances. We are then left with a nagging and fundamental question: When the irresponsible political class refuses to put its political will and action behind the transformation of a dysfunctional public service institution, how then can Nigeria achieve a strong, resilient and value-based public service that will support the objective of democratic governance?

To break out of this vicious cycle requires culture change and a change management that must bring all hands on deck, from the citizens to the civil society organizations. It is high time the citizens began to recognize that the leadership they have is a direct picture of what they deserve. When the citizens are dragged into the game that the political class play with the destiny of the Nigerian state a la stomach infrastructure, then we all are complicit in the systemic failure of the government. The vigilance of the citizens as well as the critical inquiry and actions of the civil society organizations are fundamental to the health of democratic governance. They are the ingredients required to put the political class on its toes on matters that affect us all. It is only when the feet of the government is constantly placed over the fire through constant vigilance that we can begin to channel government institutional responsibility to the urgent imperative of re-professionalizing the public service.

The task of re-professionalization becomes critical because of the changing nature of the public service and of public administration in the knowledge economy of the twenty-first century, mediated by the vulnerable, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environment and made worse by COVID-19 exigencies. The modernizing imperatives that all public service systems across the globe subscribe to is meant to bring the public service in line with current developments that bring the system to the cutting edge of technology and professional ethic. In the case of Nigeria, the public service re-professionalization drive is contingent on the gatekeeping responsibility of the civil service commissions and all other cognate structures in the public service. Professional gatekeeping is not only important in the recruitment of a critical mass of high-performers but also in the recalibration of those already in the service in ways that bring them around new competences, orientation and literacies needed to build and sustain the productivity profile of the public service. The civil service commission not only put in place regulated recruitment frameworks, but also partner with the OHCSF to craft professional ethics protocol by which the personal and public accountabilities of the public servants are closely monitored and evaluated.

READ ALSO: Court Rejects Abba Kyari’s Bail Bid

In the absence of these concerted efforts of the government and the governed in sustaining democratic governance and the value integrity of the institutions that are meant to improve the wellbeing of the citizens, we will continue to have public servants in the mold of DCP Abba Kyari multiplying; those who use the institutions and structures of government to feather their own nest and thereby increase the poverty quotient of both the citizens and the Nigerian state. Who knows how many more of these are still lurking behind institutional successes, and exploiting structural loopholes to amass wealth?

Olaopa is a retired Federal Permanent Secretary, and Professor, National Institute For Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru, Jos.


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The 2023  Elections And The Newness Of Nigeria



The Futility Of A Marital Chase
Dr. Hope Nwawolo

By Hope Nwawolo   

Despite the hues and cries that greeted the results of the 2023 elections, what if the court’s pendulum stays or swings otherwise in the expected litigations?

What will it teach our inquisitive young children?

What will it do to the hopes and dreams of the youths?

What will it do to the mind set of those in diaspora, waiting and hoping to return?

How will it affect our heroes still alive and yearning for the good old times?

One basic fact is that no matter where the pendulum swings, something new has started in the political sphere of Nigeria. And because it was unexpected, it has become almost impossible to strangulate it.  

In every competition, there is an expectation that the best man will win. That may not always be in politics, particularly, in Nigeria…where the winner may not be the best man or even the better man. And when it is said that politics is a game of numbers, sometimes, the actual numbers may not be visible to determine the end result. It becomes a case of the more you look the less you see; until interpreted by respected learned men with high integrity.

Politics, they say is a dirty game, where money speaks and promises made are broken without an iota of guilt. Where the gullible minds of the masses are deceived, with as little as a box of indomie. Where some vibrant but jobless youths are brainwashed to risk their lives to snatch ballot boxes for the politicians who do not know them beyond giving them stipends through some third parties. Where market women are forced to come out for rallies and campaigns because they cannot afford the fine that will be imposed on them if they failed to participate. They also do not want the harassment of the market leaders. 

In politics, fear is palpable in the air, before, during and after elections. The 2023 elections recently carried out, depicted these more than expected in both the politicians and electorate. What started like the usual political pattern took a drastic turn about nine months to the first elections and though it was said to be only a social media affair, it got everyone sitting upright and tightening his seat belt, particularly after the first elections.

Now, there is a generational shift, a new awakening, a new dawn and a new political birth, waiting to happen. To wherever the pendulum turns; where the court stands, it will make a turnaround in Nigeria. It may be turbulent at the beginning, it may be emotionally draining and psychologically traumatizing, but it will point to light at the end of the tunnel.

There is a new hope backed by a high spirit of determination. An unexplainable faith in many people for that newness of existence and purpose. An unprecedented emotional and psychological strength in the youths not to give up on their dreams. An unquenchable desire to keep praying. Soon a newness will break forth to calm all nerves and dry all tears.

A newness that will permeate conflicts and hatred,

A newness that will dissipate unnecessary anger,

A newness that will usher in unquestionable and transparent political systems in future elections,

A newness of freedom to choose a candidate without coercion or molestation

A newness of jubilation after the announcement of election results.

This is the new Nigeria that is awaiting delivery…

Nwawolo, PhD, writes from Lagos.




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Overcoming Policy Execution Trap As Nigeria’s Development Challenge



Prof. Tunji Olaopa

By Tunji Olaopa

If I am asked to give a succinct and apt summary of the entire challenge faced by the Nigerian state in terms of her policy architecture and development management, in spite of contestation in the development literature, I will not hesitate in stating clearly and unambiguously that it is the challenge of policy implementation; the whole dynamics of getting things done. By elimination, the implication is that the challenge cannot be located as that of the dearth of development ideas, insights, models and paradigms. Right from her independence, Nigeria has been inundated with several ideas, both local and global, about development policy and frameworks. And yet, policy outcomes keep getting bogged down in the murky waters of political shenanigans. This means that the new administration of Bola Ahmed Tinubu has its challenge mapped out, in red, for it.

There is no shying away from this postcolonial predicament that has limited and kept limiting Nigeria’s capacity to honour the terms of her social contract with Nigerians. Hence, the Tinubu government will soon be inundated with the impatient agitations of Nigerians for a quick and tangible fix that will address their sufferings. And they are justified since they have not been given any real deal for the past sixty-three years of sovereign independence. And the new administration is obligated because that is the reason for seeking office in the first place.

Prof. Olaopa’s new book on public policy and development challenges

How then can we begin to understand this policy execution challenge? It is simple: how can an administration in Nigeria transition from governance vision and policy intention to policy outcomes that elevate and transform the quality of life of its citizens? Failure to understand and give critical and political attention to this question lies at the heart of the governance failures of successive Nigerian administrations. The new Tinubu administration cannot afford such a glaring mistake. And so, a fundamental case must be made out of the question of how policy intentions get circumscribed in the dynamics of policy execution that occasions policy failures in past administrations.

Modern states all across the world are distinguished by the traditional four functions they discharge as part of their administrative responsibilities—security i.e. securing the sovereign territory against lawlessness, policy formulation and implementation, governance regulation and service delivery.The capacity to perform each and all of these functions very well within an integrated framework in the governance context is what delivers the dividends of democratic governance to the citizens, and it enhances the state’s competitive and human development rating in global reckoning. With these functions, we have the metrics to differentiate between high-performing states like China, India, the United States,Botswana, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirate, Germany, Rwanda and the Asian Tigers (Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea), and low- or even under-performing countries like Nigeria that is still cluelessly stuck within a dysfunctional vicious cycle within her arrested development.

From the perspective of governance, there must be something these states are getting right in the connection between leadership, politics, and policy articulation. For instance, there is a trajectory of relationship that links elite bargains to development bargains. In other words, development is a
function of elite nationalism and the extent to which the political class of a state can commit elite suicide and gamble on development on behalf of the people they are leading. In Nigeria, low
manifestation of elite nationalism has made it really difficult for the political class to set aside their personal and egoistic class interests in ways that enable them to clearly and ideologically discern and navigate the deadly developmental landmines strewn all over our governance landscape by the
neoliberal implication of ideological apparatuses and frameworks to which Nigeria is beholden. And here, the factor of development gamble of the Asian Tigers’ elites comes into bold relief. From within the ideological ambit of the developmental state, the leadership of the Asian Tigers were able to define a policy space that consciously and critically weighed the benefits and shortfalls of external influences, especially the type that came from the World Bank, IMF and the other cohorts of the neoliberal policy dynamics. Their developmental circumspection paid off!

Since we cannot argue that Nigeria has been stumped by the lack of vision documents, development plans and blueprints, or even policy expertise, the locus of the new administration’s focus  must be directed at the possibility of mustering the political will to undermine the mystified Nigerian Factor, and face the global neoliberal consensus in order to begin the crafting of an enabling policy architecture to drive development. And to achieve this translates to creating the delicate balance between ‘doing the right things’ (a function of decision making quotient) and ‘doing it right’(project and change management effectiveness), and overcoming the various political, cultural, structural and systemic constraints that trapped past well-meaning policies and intentions of Nigerian leaders in the dynamics of implementation.

There is first the conspiracy of elitist interest that ensures there is a poor resource allocation that focuses on elite bargain than development calculations and taking care of the national interest. Other constraints follow: (a) the disconnect between policy design and implementation due to  weak  implementation planning, risk assessment and incompetent change management strategies; (b) unstable and poorly managed macroeconomic policies; (c) policy and project discontinuity; (d) public service low capability readiness; (e) political interference; and finally (f) deep-seated political and bureaucratic corruption. In essence, development has failed not because Nigeria lacks the blueprint or paradigms to make it happen, but due to the dynamics of the politics that the political elite plays with Nigeria’s development potential.

Let me outline what we can regard as the “politics of policy implementation” that Nigeria has played for many years, a politics the new administration must take into serious consideration if it
does not want to fall into the category of failed administration right before it commences. This politics throws Nigeria’s development and policy non-performance right into the frame of the 2005 World Bank review findings about policy and development projects in Africa. According to the finding, 29% of development projects ever get completed, 45% of on-going projects are rated as satisfactory, while 26% of such projects invariably get cancelled. Such a review can never backstop a solid development project of a developmental state.

The politics of policy implementation in
Nigeria is founded on the following assumptions and practices. One: there is that dangerous presumption, that the new administration must resist, that once policies and development plan are designed, they are automatically implemented by the public service. And such a presumption is against the background of a scant investment in implementation analysis and planning, as well as the failure to facilitate the capability review, determine public
administration system’s capability readiness, and strengthening of the MDAs as the powerhouse of government administrative functionality. The MDAs, that is, are not working according to any
specific theories or praxis of change that can guide the functional integration of blueprints or paradigms. This kind of policy inattention draws attention to the policy contradiction: launching a
national development plan and strategy that are not implementation- ready in terms of adequate capability review of the MDAs integral to ensuring implementation success. Two: this
presumption is compounded by the uncritical reliance of past governments on policy experts and consulting firms who are tasked with designing high-end policies that are then dumped on MDAs whose capability reviews and implementation readiness have been neglected in the first place. The
extroversion of the policy design is then compromised by poor functional integration. The truth is that most of these consulting firms lack the appropriate deep content and solution frameworks that are in tandem with the context of policy dysfunction they are supposed to work with. Three: governance policy or project are hardly subjected to feasibility test determined in terms of scope and expectation that are captured by their framework of time, cost and risk assessments before
they are pushed into implementation. This makes it very difficult to benchmark funding projections for these policies and projects against revenue estimations, as well as facilitating in-built flexibilities that enable the policies and projects to adjust to volatilities and contingencies.

All the issues raised above constitute binding constraint that will undermine any governance possibilities the new administration requires to make a success of democratic governance. Undermining the binding constraints demands returning to the fundamentals. The first and most significant is that the new administration needs to interrogate the framework of how government business is currently being conducted. Governance successes are necessarily a function of how government business engages the complexities of the policy design and execution processes within a results-oriented frame. And that entails undermining the structural gaps between policy objectives, development strategies and policy outcomes. This demands second, setting the public service on a performance curve with the institution of a performance management system. This means that the public service must, for example, unfailingly now deploy KPI-based metrics to replace the cumbersome annual performance evaluation report (APER). And at the backend, it becomes imperative to have a monitoring and evaluation system supported by databases that enable staff and program continuous assessment, human resource development rooted in iterativep performance gap identification, supervisors-staff dialogue and multisource feedback mechanismsf for overall national development policy tracking and reporting.

The governance mantra must be on getting the balance between doing the right things and doing it right. And this cannot be achieved through the wanton multiplication or even duplication of
governance plans, programs and blueprints. What is needed is sequencing the blueprints into a coherent and feasible implementation programme, with the right amount of political will behind it. This gives the success of democratic governance a 95% chance of succeeding. The new administration  needs that fighting chance!

. Olaopa, a retired Federal Permanent Secretary, and Professor of Public Administration .

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Rigged Elections And The Moral Burden Of Illegitimacy



Prof. Hope Eghagha

By  Hope O’Rukevbe Eghagha

Adamu: A man who rigs his way to power carries a moral burden!

Orezime: A moral what?

Adamu: You heard me, didn’t you?

Orezime: I’m not sure I heard you right. Moral what you said?

Adamu: A moral burden, I said!

Orezime: Hahahahahahaha! You make me laugh! Are you from the moon?

Gani: Or Mars?

Emeka: In which country? In Nigeria? That principle does not apply in Nigeria! There is no moral burden on anybody in this country! The election which produced Bubu in 2015 was rigged. Where are the two million voters from Kano State who voted in 2015? Was an INEC official not burnt alive after that election? The one which brought Obj to power was also rigged by the forces which wanted him to ease the tension of the Abiola tragedy on the Yoruba people. Yet those men had the temerity to preach against corruption!

Orezime: The international community winked at the whole exercise.

Gani: Yes! That’s why those two could only preach; they couldn’t really act decisively. A moral burden? They spoke from both sides of their mouths on the issue of corruption. The late President Yar Adua confessed that the election which produced him was compromised. An honest man, he didn’t live long enough to right the wrong of the period!

Orezime: That’s why I laughed when Adamu talked about a moral burden arising from rigged elections.

Bankole: In the ideal world, any power that is stolen and acquired through a dubious means imposes a moral burden on the power holder. No matter what the person does, that power remains stained.

Orezime: What does that amount to in our country? Even the brigands who shot their way to power in the notorious days of military misadventure in Nigeria soon became legitimate.

Emeka: You are going too far in our history. See what happened in Lagos State in the governorship elections of March 18. Ethnic jingoists went about preaching hatred against Igbo people and warned them against coming out to exercise their constitutional rights. Security officials looked the other way when ballot boxes were snatched in broad daylight in places where the opposition was leading.

Gani: A serving state governor personally went about snatching ballot boxes and threatened to shoot whoever got in his way. The same governor declared somebody wanted without recourse to the Inspector General of Police! He worked against the party on which platform he won the seat to spite the party hierarchy!

Adamu: And to think that this is the President-elect’s state. He kept mute through the horrendous attacks on Igbo people in Lagos State just the way the incumbent president has looked the other way when herdsmen went on the loose!

Bankole: Rigged elections are so familiar yet notorious in our land. It was the main trigger to the crisis in the Western Region in the First Republic because the people reacted when they saw a rape of their rights and wishes! It soon snowballed into a conflagration that consumed the nation in the late 1960s. Already, the youths are talking about a protest in the ENDSARSNOW# manner. I hope it doesn’t result in disaster. We have lost too many lives already!

Orezime: What I fear is the rise of ethnic profiling in a supposedly democratic society. To be sure, Governor Sanwo-Olu and the party hierarchy did not single out any ethnic group for verbal attacks. They even courted them. Yet they didn’t caution their followers to stop the degeneration into ethnic hatred. It is a dangerous curve what is happening in Lagos. I don’t subscribe to the Lagos is no man’s land nonsense which some misguided fellows are spewing, but threatening anybody not to vote their candidate is a new low! Can a Sanwo-Olu victory be said to be legitimate if a significant percentage of the electorate is disenfranchised?

Emeka: Good question. They did not stop there. They rolled out the culturally dreaded Oro rituals on election night. Come on! Who is fooling who? The Oro festival was designed to drive fear into non-Yoruba in Lagos. In the 21st Century?

Gani: I am sure the reports from election observers will be damning.

Bankole: I don’t care about those biased observers.

Adamu: Where are we headed in this country?

Orezime: We are on the road to Kigali!

Bankole: May we not travel that route!

Orezime: It’s a good prayer. But what are we doing to avoid the descent into anarchy? Nothing. Those monkeys are simply interested in acquiring power.

Gani: The Obedient Movement seems to have lost steam once it was misbranded as an ethnic agenda to grab power at the national level. Peter Obi needs to tread carefully so he doesn’t become another June 12! Some people are egging him on to challenge INEC through protests.

Orezime: If he decides to lead a protest, it would be within his constitutional right to do so, especially as INEC is stalling on the issue of inspecting elections materials despite an order from the courts. Peaceful protests are guaranteed by the Constitution.

Adamu: No one can be sure whether a peaceful protest will remain peaceful after it starts. That’s the experience the ENDSARS people had.

Gani: It’s not enough to stop people from taking to the streets. Protests are fundamental to democracy.

Adamu: We do not want dead heroes! Mark my words.

Bankole: That’s ominous!

Emeka: It means nothing. Nigeria must change. We cannot go on like this forever! Things are just going down. No cash. No fuel. No power supply. No security. No nothing.  Peter Obi gave a glimmer of hope. Now that has been dashed to the ground.

Adamu: Rigging will remain a moral burden each time our President-elect travels outside the country, each time he meets foreign observers, especially those ones who have a dossier on him. History will also judge him and assess how he came to power. This applies to all the states as well where some politicians have turned themselves into demigods and have compromised poor INEC officials with mouthwatering sums. This is not how to build a democracy. The votes must be counted and must count. Seventeen people have their lives during the governorship and House of Assembly elections. We are supposed to count ballot papers, not bodies. Sad!

Bankole: The moral burden of rigged elections is on all of us. Without our connivance there would be no rigging. We can only hope that this will end some day!

Emeka: Tough luck!


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