By Ndidichukwu Odoh
Convener of Red Card Government, Mrs Oby Ezekwesili and members of a new coalition of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) under the umbrella, Summit of the Alternatives (SOTA), has passed vote of no confidence on Nigeria’s top political parties—All Progressive Congress (APC) and People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
The coalition, formed to advocate to Nigerians to demand good governance from the political parties ahead of the 2019 elections, said since the 1999 democracy, Nigerians have not enjoyed dividends because the political parties bring into power candidates and government that are in capable of delivering the dividends democracy.
Speaking during a press conference ahead of the Summit of the Alternatives (SOTA) happening in Abuja on Wednesday, Mrs Ezekwesili said there has to be a way out of the political decadence in Nigeria. Stating that democracy has been poor in Nigeria because political parties decide who their candidates are without the choice of the citizens which determines the quality of governance delivered to the citizens.
She added that “the candidature of poorly prepared people deny Nigeria its development”
She further said that the citizens should be aware and let political parties know that citizens are sensitive enough and want the political system to pay attention to qualities and attributes that are important and impactful for development.
“Quality of leadership determines the quality of decisions that government makes, if we don’t fix the leadership crisis Nigeria’s democracy has had, we should not complain because Nigeria is in a precarious situation and there is a sense of urgency for the citizens to demand for quality of leadership,” Ezekwesili said.
The coalition, according to Ezekwesili, is formed in response to the security, political and socio-economic crisis that currently plague Nigeria amid a seeming reoccurrence of incompetent persons being elected into political offices, necessitating plans to the Summit of the Alternatives.
The group is to partner all other political parties besides Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressives Congress (APC) to change the leadership narrative in the country.
Speaking about SOTA, Architect Nya-Etok Ezekiel, the Director General of Nigeria First Project said the summit hopes to shape narratives to define Nigeria’s political landscape and a follow-up momentum to build a broad based, quality alternative, through a coalition and alliance of credible alternatives.
“Through this summit we want to create a national vision and strategy in how to merge public demands with political opportunity to achieve democratic ideals in near and medium term” said Nya-Etok.
Members of the coalition said Nigeria political system and her leadership have not delivered optimal service for the people despite the scale of monetary, natural and human resources abundant within.
It says that bereft of vision, the same parasitic and wasteful class comprising generations of a decadent political elite has undermined the quality of Nigeria’s political leadership in both military and democratic governments.