– Wants Nigeria to go back to politics of ideology
By David Ejiohuo
A one time Deputy Senate President, Alhaji Ibrahim Mantu, has described Nigeria’ Democracy as a very sick one that needs urgent surgery.
Alhaji Mantu made the remark during the weekend, when he spoke with the journalists at the Port Harcourt International Airport Omagwa, about the State of the Nation.
According to the formal senator who was in Rivers State for a private visit, the recent invasions of the National Assembly by some hoodlums and the police has threatened the survival of democracy in Nigeria.
“The recent invasion of the National Assembly, especially the senate, where I used to work, by the police and the alleged thugs from Senator Omo Agege group that attempted to deny the lawmakers the right to do their expected duties, is an abomination and sacrilegious.”
This, he pointed out, was most unfortunate and that if the matters were not handled and further situations arrested, that it could spell doom for the nation. He noted that all over the world, the nations and people were looking up to Nigeria for good leadership examples but that our behaviours do not portray any sign of the good leadership expected of us.
He said: “I am very much concerned about what is happening to our democracy and I am using this opportunity to appeal to those in power to as a matter of necessity, eschew party differences and ensure that they don’t do what will shake the fundamental system of Nigeria as a nation because, Nigeria must be there before they can belong to any political party.”
To him, politicians could agree or disagree but must not do things outside the boundaries of normal politicking because the nation comes first before any other considerations.
On the effect of the recent defections on our democracy, Alhaji Mantu explained that the problem of the Nigerian political parties was that they were not based on ideologies.
“Yes, they are not based on ideologies because if they were, it will be difficult for anybody to be a member of the PDP in the morning and cross carpet to APC in the evening.”
Ideology, he explained, was like a belief as seen in most advanced countries, where the parties exist for generations and are finally inherited by their children.
He warned that as far as the politicians continue to use the political parties as platforms to acquire political power, that the Nigeria democracy may not be deep rooted.
Speaking further on the pace of defections, the former Deputy Senate President pointed out that it does not portray Nigerian politicians as serious ones and that it was high time the Nigeria parties were built on ideologies and make people belong to them for as long as they live. “When we develop the parties properly, the Nigeria electorates will be able to follow suite and decide who they can vote for at any given time”.
On the chances of the main opposition party, Peoples Democracy Party (PDP), to win the 2019 general election, Alhaji Ibrahim Mantu said the PDP will win the 2019 general election with or without the large defections to the party.
The All Progress Congress (APC) he noted has failed woefully and that Nigeria electorates will vote them out because they have compared and contrasted the two parties.
According to him, his worries stems from the attitude of those in position of authority, who he noted, would want to be there at all cost. “In this country, once you are there, you want to remain there at all cost. They would use the power of incumbency, brutality and selective application of fighting corruption because, if I am in PDP, I am very corrupt but if I join the APC, I am as clean as the Pope.”
According to him, this is not the way to go about fighting corruption because the truth speaks lauder than the voices.