A walk on the street ‘post election matters’
The elections have come and gone, and to some people, it was a mirage of what
the popular Afro Beat Musical icon, Fela Anikulapo Kuti described as a
DEMONSTRATION OF CRAZE (DEMOCRACY). To others, it was a nucleus
that birthed the new world order of government (DEMOCRACY). Thus, this
writeup will be in tandem to Oyo and Kwara States only.
For almost three decades, I have known DEMOCRACY TO BE
GOVERNMENT OF THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE, and FOR THE
PEOPLE as defined by the former American president Abraham Lincoln. Had i
known what I know now that the definition has been doctored, I would have
paid more attention to the streets and communities of my dear country.
As a student of light who had known that the most popular and generally-
accepted definition or form of Democracy is that of GOVERNMENT OF THE
PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE, and FOR THE PEOPLE, I was marvelled at this
new reordered definition and this made me summon courage and dig deep to
actually, get the definition of democracy on the streets of my dear country!
Lo and behold I heard an echoing voice from the rear saying: “Oga! Oga! E
fara bale” (calm down). I reacted pronto to capture the image of the beholder.
He said further, “Oga, the democracy wey you see for Naija na the one wey dem
dey carry government OFF the people, BUY the people and FORCE the
I asked with curiosity,”wetin you mean?” The middle-aged man continued,
“the few wey dem be oga they rule and circumvent we plenty, if situation come
happen say we no too like their pattern, na soso money dem go dey give us to
follow them, and if we come do askari say we no want their money again gbege
go show face….police, army and thugs na him them go send come deal with us.
Na why me talk say democracy for we country na to circumvent us, buy us and
force us. Any of the us na us! “
The expression got me hibernated and made afloat a serious echo in my mind as
if there was a continuous call of “Zico” with the”co” at the end of the word
reverberating in my head, soul and mind.
From the foregoing, I drew inspiration to credit the citizens of Kwara and Oyo
States for their courage and unflinching patriotism. They defied all odds and
stood firm to actualize DEMOCRACY AS THE GOVERNMENT OF THE
PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE, and FOR THE PEOPLE.
I can imagine what is going on in your minds as to why I did single out the 2
states out of 36 states in Nigeria. I will explain.
To start with, una sabi say wetin happen for Kanem, Borno empire wey one
person and him people dey rule the whole empire (na so dem teach us for
History class o) na him bin dey happen for una Kwara so?…….
Albeit the”King Maker”was resolute to continue the dynasty in Kwara State, his
plans fell through and his heart got shattered. The centre could not hold again as
experienced in the 2019 Kwara elections. Hence, anarchy was restored thanks to
the efforts of the people (who voted).
It is safe to say that, among Kwarans, the result of the just concluded
gubernatorial elections signifies Democracy Day celebration than an election
day having seen their wishes reflected by re-doctoring the definition of
Democracy as the government OF the people and not OFF the people.
Pause. Come to think of it. Could this victory have been achieved had they
neglected their civic responsibilities? I doubt it very much.
Oh, about the man explaining”Democracy” to me, he still had more to say. This
time, the man exclaimed aloud,”Lailai!”By now I was used to his voice, so I
replied emphatically,”No be only una dey happy for hia o, Ibadan people self
they jolly for there too!”
“Abeg for hia, how many of una do history for school? Una remember how dem
oyinbo dey fight to come colonize we blacks during the Berlin conference wey
happen for 1884-85. They say naso different people dey fight for Oyo state to
fill in the shoes of baba Adedibu since he don die.”
A man out of the crowd, which had been relatively quiet before now,
interjected, “I have paid attention since the inception of the whole discussion
but I would like to talk about Oyo state because I am from Ibadan, my mum is
from Ogbomosho and I reside in Oyo town.” An orchestrated section of the
audience chipped in with the word”Itumo! Itumo!!”meaning Meaning!
Sir, the democratic fit as enjoyed in the 2019 elections in Oyo State started
since yesterday. The old Oyo Empire was democratic in nature which allowed
check and balance by the Alaafin and his Chiefs. Oyo people had always
checked and balanced their government by ensuring none of them gets an
undeserved second term in office. Nowadays, it appears that the game plan has
That accounts for the joy we experience in Oyo state now because the will of
the people reflected with the victory of the Governor-elect.
Therefore, my advice for electorates of Oyo, Kwara and the other 33 states in
Nigeria is that we start participating in governance. Let us endeavour to our
their civic responsibilities, then development and good governance will be the
order of the government. Take my advice!
RAJI AZEEZ BISOYE
MA PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT STUDIES.