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Date Published: 09/23/10

Issues in 2011 Presidential Election


The 2011 general election is in top gear and serious contenders have signified their interests to vie for the highest position in the land next year. Just like previous elections, it appears the coming election is being run on trivial issues and not on issues that border on the general wellbeing of the people.

First, it was the issue of zoning or no zoning, whether Jonathan can run or can not run etc. Ordinarily, this should not affect us as a nation if everything goes aright. President Jonathan would not have been scheming right, left and centre to be endorsed if he can prove his worth as a candidate. The time President Jonathan has spent so far as president is enough for him to prove that he is the candidate to beat.

But because in this part of the world we climb trees from the top of the tree, we are running the type of campaign that is evidently naïve. The sack of the former PDP chairman was hinged on corruption charges. A lot of noise was made about it and all that seem to be history now that a seeming willing tool has been installed. The new chairman looks very comfortable because he is willing to play ball.

The recent sack of the service chiefs, DG of State Security Service and the Inspector General of Police portends a lot a danger for the nation. It is clear even to a blind man that the sack was politically motivated. These people were appointed by the late president, Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. Their removal could only mean that they are perceived as not loyal enough to do the biddings of the present president. These are men who have reached the peak of their professions having made lots of contributions to national development, but only to be sacrificed on the alter of political manoeuvring. Too bad for the nation!

We are in the era of politics of posters and billboards. There’s nothing bad in that. At least our printers are smiling to the bank. Yes, most of the aspirants are rich enough to print truck load of posters for every Nigerian. The president has State resources to play around with. He doesn’t even need a dime to print posters or erect billboards. Government contractors, State Governors, Head of Parastatals and Agencies, Ministers etc are on hand to market Jonathan.

What I have against these posters is the indiscriminate way they are being pasted around. Our streets are littered and in most cases pasted where they are not needed i.e. on street identification numbers. I even noticed in some places that Jonathan posters are pasted on top of IBB’s. What a petty way of doing things. Are Jonathan’s men so constrained with space that the only place they see is on IBB’s posters? Why tear other contestants’ posters?

It is equally petty to run paid adverts on the pages of newspapers abusing other contestants in the name of electioneering campaign. What should rather run on those pages should be electoral programmes. You want to be president of Nigeria. How are you going to better our lot when elected? Methinks that is what the electorates are interested in and not who annulled which election.

Mohammed Ali Jnr.

No 2 Golf Course Close

Ungwar Rimi


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