Love doesn’t win election, deception does. Plato would be mad to see how “politics”, his most beloved concept that cost him an encyclopedic volume, is reduced to mere office-seeking madness. To the one of the greatest philosophers of the old Greek, the city of Athens, politics is all about justice and creating utopia. In Nigeria the reverse of the Platonic philosophy is practiced. Machiavelli was right when he said that politics has no morals, especially in Nigeria where deception is a normal step to ascending the throne of kleptomania. Who cares about the semi-homeless destitute roaming in the streets? Jackson’s “They Don’t Really Care About Us” is a perfect song in the Nigerian politics. No, they care about us as political thugs killing one another to defend the interests of the oppressors.
We are in two weeks of mass defection in Nigeria. Where corrupts are turning to saints and vice versa. Remember that corrupt former governor, Akpabio? He is now swept very clean by the almighty broom of APC. The unholy PDP is now receiving back its members that swear the party is nothing but collection of people who have no national interests in their minds. What many of us know not is that crosstitudes belong to the same party. It is called SI: Self Interests. APC and PDP are part of their constructs to distract us from seeing their true colours. They only switch parties to defend their interests. Career politicians know well how to play with our senses.
But there is no way to escape from this grip. We just need to be conscious of what they are doing. As Plato said, if we do not join politics we will end up being ruled by the kleptomaniac and stupid. Politics is everyone’s business. Just like the nation’s economy, it affects everyone in one way or the other. It shapes the lives of citizens and directs their movements. Reading the Plato’s Republic, one can vividly see how politics, in philosophical sense, can be reduced to the ways it affects the lives of street-begging destitute in the nooks and crannies of Zamfara, high ranking government official in Kaduna, business tycoons from Arewa, divorced and widowed women in Kano, to office-seeking politicians roaming in the avenues of Abuja.
One should not quit politics, but he should be conscious of the activities of crosstitudes. When one of my teachers, Mallam Ibraheem A. Waziri, posted his worries on how Arewa Facebook Community is moving the intellectual discourses to the narrow political brouhaha, I too join him in blaming the influencers and agents of the crosstitudes for joining partisan politics instead of promoting national interests. But when he said that some people decided to logout of Facebook till after general election, I became perplexed. If they all log out, who can save us from the manipulations of party switchers? An intellectual should see things through multidimensional view.
Politics in Nigeria is approaching its peak level as days to election are numbered. To think that people should not talk and post on politics is to deny them what the basic definition of democracy consists of. Let them talk on politics but discourage them to participate in the partisan politics of “Sak”. Political inclusion can only be seen when people discuss on politics. Let the governed keep on posting on the government. What you should do, as an intellectual, is to make them stop talking about politicians, but force them, if you can, to talk on the politics. It is their future.
It is time to understand that most of these party switchers are after their interests. I’m not saying that those who stay in their parties are saints and angels, they are birds of the same feather. 2019 general election should be different. We should use lenses that can help us see a true colour of politicians. Let no anybody manipulate us and show that he cares for “talakawa” or is there to defend our religion, cultural backgrounds or ethnicity. We need to change the change beyond changing parties. The politics of “sak” where the party is seen first, is a disaster. The war against corruption that the current government is taking about, is a game of deception. The war is only against the political enemies not the insidious corrupt officials. This time, we are to vote for people not to vote for parties.