APC and How Not To Play Opposition Politics
APC AND HOW NOT TO PLAY OPPOSITION POLITICS By Edwin Ekene Uhara
Ever since the All Progressives Congress (APC) became a household name in the nation's socio-political mantra, one unique feature that has become their permanent identity is their penchant for blames without corresponding penchant for proffering solutions! Hence, viewing the giant of Africa through APC's lens, a no-brainer citizen will assume that all is doom and gloom for Nigeria, or will liken it to the Biblical city of Nazareth where there was a wrong notion that nothing good would ever come from; until the emergence of Jesus Christ from that great city, and all the wrong perceptions changed for glory!
As an ardent watcher of Nigeria's socio-economic and political activities, I have been studying the substances behind every critical statement issued by APC, but, only to find out that, the party is only interested in criticizing Jonathan's Government, but lacks the clue or have failed to tell Nigerians how they would provide alternative leadership and run a different government if voted in to power in the coming election. In fact, I have seen President Good Luck Jonathan and the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) congratulate or appraise the opposition state governors and their national leaders over one thing or the other, but, I have not seen or read (Even in the rumour mills) of any APC statement supporting, congratulating and appraising any of the giant strides or undeniable achievements of President Good Luck Jonathan or the PDP-controlled Federal Government! All their statements only centers on 'condemnation, condemnation and no solution'! Is this how to play opposition politics and win election?
The mistake they are making is that, they have failed to realize that majority of Nigerians are no longer interested in anybody or group telling them their problems or the problem with their government, but, are now interested in finding solutions than mere knowing their problems where they would be subjected to the psychological trauma usually associated with that.
If you say Nigeria has decrepit infrastructures, then you should also endeavor to tell Nigerians what you have done to modernize or replace them! Better still, you can release your blue-print on how you plan to do better if voted in to power by the electorates in future elections. I'm not against outright and objective condemnation, but, if you condemn, you should also be able to proffer solutions or tell Nigerians what you will do to outperform the government of the day! Politics is not all about criticism, but, if you criticize as a progressive political party, you should also be able to tell Nigerians about your progressive ideas or ideologies on how to move the nation forward.
Unlike in the United States politics where the Republicans emphases on their conservative way or methods of running the government and also criticize the government in power based on their conservative ideology, the Nigerian All Progressives Congress (APC) has no particular line or way of criticism. For example, the Republicans upholds and tenaciously defend the belief that organizations or individuals should on their own determine the height they want to attain in life in a free market economy, while the direct opposite is the Democrats who believe in democratic solidarity or welfarism! It is because of the above line of thoughts that, the Republican-controlled government under the leadership of former President George W. Bush in 2008 decided to allow one of the American Investment Banks, 'Lehman Brothers' to go under by filing for bankruptcy protection without minding its effects on the entire economy! Also, it was because of this same line of thought that, the Republicans fiercely opposed the passage of Obama's 'Stimulus Plan' in to law in the congress; even though it would jump start and revive the ailing American economy by creating jobs, bailing out bankrupt companies among others. But, for the fact that, it would require the pumping of tax payer's money in to a 'free market economy', the Republicans vehemently opposed it. This is however not the type I advocate for, but, I only cited it to justify the argument I'm making!
But right here in Nigeria, the All Progressives Congress (APC) is not progressive in thinking! Otherwise, how can a progressive party be carelessly calling for the shutdown of the government or the impeachment of the President? I am however not of the view that, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) should agree on everything, but, they must be willing to shift grounds on certain issues of public interest, instead of taking a more radical approach to things! This is the essence of bipartisanship in a constitutional democracy! Such bipartisanship is highly needed because; politics is not for animals in the bush, but for human beings and about human up liftments and advancement! Hence, instead of opposing every action of Jonathan's Government and the PDP, while proposing nothing, the APC should blend criticisms with solutions for the overall development of the country. This is how I feel opposition politics should be played in Nigeria!
Comrade Edwin Ekene Uhara, an Activist, Political Strategist, Media Consultant and Public Affairs Commentator is the National President of Young Nigerians for Change.
Text or email him on 07065862479, 08076134054 [email protected] No. 9, Imgbi Road, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, Nigeria.