Indeed, there are many closed minds on the November 6 election matter. There are people who labour hard in toil to deter people from participating in the election, citing all manner of trivia to discredit the state and make their audience believe that going out to vote is doing government a big favour.
But the truth is that neither the government nor politicians would reap any special favour from anyone’s participation in the election. Rather, the citizen loses by opting out of the exercise. Whoever fails to foresee how he losses by not showing up to vote tomorrow may be pardoned for being short-sighted but in reality, he is suffering from naivety. If there is no voter to elect the 18 candidates, the man who comes closest to getting a larger number of votes, will become the next governor, irrespective of what citizens say or feel.
In democracy, people are key in governance, development and the momentum of society. But it is not just people that matter, the larger the number, the better. Everything about elections is hinged on higher number of people. Same role does the number of people do in almost every decision made democratically, which is basically a government of the people, by the people, for the people. Hence, when the people factor is taken away from a democracy, it is no longer democracy.
The other factors are credibility and relevance. For now that the crust of discourse is the populace turning up for tomorrow’s election, the absence of voters in polling stations would ebb away big chips from the credibility and integrity of the election. Later, such absence would haunt the people and the land more as they would lose their relevance and claim of ownership of the government of whichever candidate that would win. Should Ndi Anambra stay away from the polls, whoever gets the diadem may ride the land like a deaf and indifferent Czar who just conquered a quiet land full of prized spoils. However, it has never been in the Anambra’s person’s character to be aloof or pretend to be unconcerned when things like election take place. From the great Nnamdi Azikiwe, who deployed his brain and means to secure Nigeria’s independence to others, the state is marked by heroes and heroines of local, national and international acclaim. Never had they been known for cowardice.
In wisdom and enterprise, the Anambra person in a rare breed, envied for his ingenuity and brave innovations. Therefore, it is unimaginable that suddenly, the Anambra person, one of the most daring human persons to be found anywhere, has turned lamb and timid because there is an election.
In the past 30 years of her existence, events have been challenging and tough for Anambra but by dint of a rare persistent quest for better turn of things, the state has prevailed over her demons.
History and peculiar characteristics, therefore, gives one hope that Ndi Anambra will not succumb to the intimidations and deceptions of the current build-up to the election; no matter who or which authority has scripted the saga. Ndi Anambra have only to borrow a leaf from Edo people.
Ahead the last gubernatorial election in Edo, there was violence, aplenty amid heavy stench of blood on the streets, all over the state. There were killers, kidnappers, bullies and all manner of rumour bearers as well as droppers of names from high places. The atmosphere of fear and imminence of death in Benin and environs were heavy. Threats of conquest and subjugation of the state by the huge Goliaths of Nigerian politics were high.
On September 19, 2020, the people of Edo State proved their adversary wrong. They emerged en mass at polling units and cast their votes. Had the Edo people stayed at home, the election would not have held.
Anambra people must go out and vote tomorrow, Saturday, November 6. The major goal of the vendors of the current orgy of violence is to frighten the populace and scare them away from voting centers. But no, Ndi Anambra should go and vote. Thank God there is adequate security.