In order to appreciate the nexus between the mass media and democracy, it should be noted that the most important ingredient of democratic practice is communicating untailored analysis of events in order to balance opinion formation, perception building and social mediation of Citizens. The clamour for a decent and inclusive leadership has in recent times prompted Gender Advocates to device other means to pass personal political analysis into public space. One of these advocates is Aisha Osori.

Aisha currently runs a weekly Youtube Vlog (Political News in Five – PNi5) where she discusses political issues that cuts across the nation’s affairs with an in-depth analysis that unveils the truth on matters arising. In her words the series will ensure that young people need to get the politics behind the news in ways easier to digest and process while it also make sure many of Virtual Space users are more aware of how politics play such a determinant role in our daily lives.

Ayisha Osori is a writer, lawyer, and advocate for social justice. She has worked for different developmental organizations serving as strong advocate for women inclusivity in governance. One of her latest books “Love does not win elections” x-rays her personal experiences of how deeply dysfunctional our primary process within the Nigerian politics is. Please find below the current and second edition as we enjoin to watch out for her next week for a more insightful series!

*Political news – Week of Jan 14* *Welcome to the 2nd edition of PNi5.

The week started with polls and statements from across the country saying ‘no’ to Buhari’s 2019 re-election bid. Others begged through open letters, signalling the start of the letter writing season. While we wait for the ultimate letter writer from Ota to share his thoughts, we do know that he considers it too soon to say if he will support a 2nd term for Buhari. By the end of the week, 7 governors out of 19 endorsed him for a 2nd term. Personally, I think Buhari should run. No one should beg him not to run – it is his right to run. Those who don’t want him have a duty to find a better alternative and campaign to ensure their candidate wins. Considering the myth around him, we cannot afford any lingering thought that he is the country’s saviour – let his defeat or win at the polls be resounding. Besides, there is a small brigade of politicians who know they won’t win if he is not contesting – they need him on posters next to them and there is an entire political economy reliant on him staying in power.

  1. Just before Benue state buried 73 people last week, VP Osinbajo warned Nigerians not to politicise the herdsmen and farmers killings across the country as doing so could ignite unprecedented crisis. Sadly, this warning is too late. The Politics of blame, finger pointing and ‘whataboutery’ is alive and well. All you have to do is say Benue, and someone will say Taraba. Say Adamawa and someone will respond with Zamfara. The truth is we are all victims – suffering from the same thing – lack of committed and visionary leadership. Trading blame only shifts responsibility around like a ping pong ball. Climate change, failure to preserve grazing routes, population explosion, inability to be proactive, break-down of law and order all contribute to the inferno that is burning, many Nigerians tried to advise and warn this government but as usual there is no urgency. May the souls of all who have died and continue to die from the failure of state rest in perfect peace.

 

  1. Which leads us to 2019. INEC released the timetable for the 2019 elections: Feb 16 for President and NASS and March 2 for Governors and State Assemblies. INEC also provided a timeline of when political parties are expected to carry out activities – which means there are only 267 days until parties must complete their primaries on October 7. One question we should be asking is who gets to decide whether presidential elections come before the gubernatorial or whether the gubernatorial comes first? Watchers of politics say that the order of elections is designed to ensure the governors deliver the presidency, and then they get support for their own individual stakes in the election. Nigerians should be asking: why can’t we hold all our elections on one day?

 

  1. Talking about primaries – there was something in the news last week that gave me joy and should give us all hope. A PDP aspirant for the ticket to represent Anambra Central in the Senate in 2015 won a judgement against PDP for the return of 4.5M the aspirant spent on party forms. The court found that PDP did not hold any primaries for that senate seat in 2014 and Chike Maduekwe’s expectation of a fair electoral was thwarted/disappointed. This decision and the entire case around this central senatorial seat is inspiring. It buttresses the fact that we need more people who are harder to compromise, joining the parties and forcing the parties to work the way they should. It also shows that crime does not pay – so the person in whose favour the primaries were rigged failed to keep the seat. Only as party members can we challenge the status quo within the parties. It also sends a message to the political parties that they must hold fair primaries. Next, we hope the officials who organised the charade are expelled from the party.

 

  1. State of the states. Fayemi’s posters flood Ekiti for the 2018 gubernatorial elections –July 14 2018 with primaries expected to hold in April· CA in Kaduna nullified the election of a member of the House representing a constituency in Katsina for irregularities. Almost 3 years later. Will he return the salary and allowances he has collected in all this time? Handshake across the Niger meeting held in Enugu. Elder statesmen from SS/SE/Middle belt and SW met to discuss the political restructuring of Nigeria. Interesting that it was not NC but Middle belt…My own interest is: will restructuring be a campaign issue in 2019? Would have been nice to know what this emotion triggering word means to these men.

*Quiz of the week*

How long will our ballot papers be if all 68 parties field candidates? And if we don’t have names on the ballot will you remember what party your candidate is running under?