Sincerely, these are interesting times in our polity as we are being regaled daily with tales of absurdity and irresponsibility from custodians of the peoples mandate either in the immediate past or presently and it’s a cause for concern for our democracy and society whose existence and sanity is under threat by such acts.However, one has observed and listened to divergent views from Nigerians over the invitations of Honourables Dogara and Jibrin to appear before their party, the APC investigative committee with regards to the allegations and counter allegations of padding of the 2016 budget between the duo, which has resulted in a division in the House of Representatives and brought the image of the house to public opprobrium.
While one appreciates the beauty of democracy and life which emphasizes that variety is the spice of life via divergence of opinions on issues, it is equally important for us to educate and sensitize ourselves on the tenets of democracy which emphasizes civilized and peaceful resolution of conflicts which cannot but occur in the course of human interaction and engagements.
Thus, one must congratulate Hon. Abdulmumuni Jibrin for being patriotic and responsible for toeing the path of decency and patriotism in petitioning the anti corruption agencies on the issue of abuse of public trust by some principal officers of the House of Representatives, notably the speaker, Yakubu Dogara, his deputy Lasun, chief whip Ado Doguwa and minority leader Leo Ogor.
However, one finds as misplaced, the criticism against the APC from certain quarters for summoning its members who were elected into office under its banner, for conducts observed as a dent to the positive image of the party, after all, the party is their Principal. So one is forced to question the motive of such critics against the party for doing the needful of being intimated first hand of the role of its members involved in the crisis being generated in the polity.
One only hopes we are very conscious of the fact that our image and honour as a people is brought to disrepute when elected representatives conduct themselves in a manner of which is an abuse of public trust and a violation of the laws of the land. Moreover, when the office in question is that of the speaker of the House of Representatives, who is the number 4 citizen of the country and a symbol of constituted authority and integrity of the Nigerian people, is under the spotlight for dishonourable conduct.
One fact which we cannot run away from in our political dispensation, is the fact that our political space is comprised of political parties without ideologies and discipline such that a lot of our politicians don’t stand for any recognizable and emulative principles and can switch political camps between three or more parties within 24 hours and people see it as normal and even go as far as celebrating such acts of political prostitution.
The truth of the matter is that, the conduct of our politicians is a reflection of the Nigerian people because they are products of the society in which our moral value is at its lowest ebb. As you stand before the camera will be the output of the picture, no more, no less.
Therefore, no mechanism should be condemned on the face value from being accessed for restoring the dignity of the house and our democracy, of which the party’s machinery can also come in handy to whip its members into line to behave themselves responsibly by toeing the path of civility and honour of submitting whatever infractions they have observed to the law through the security agencies rather than trading words in the media and impugning the integrity of the house and our democracy.
However, as we commend the APC for summoning the courage to carry out personal investigation of its members on a matter which is already before the security agencies to investigate and determine if an infraction of the law has occurred, may we admonish other parties to also reinvigorate their disciplinary mechanism to investigate and mete out appropriate sanctions against erring members whose conduct damages the reputation of the party and imperils our democracy in order to serve as a deterrent and discourage them from graduating to violate the greater laws of the land and subject us all to the national embarrassment that we are facing now.
As for the opposition party, the PDP, one only hopes that the two factions of the party will come together and toe the line of the APC in summoning Honourable Leo Ogor to face questioning pending when the security agencies would have completed their constitutionally empowered function, in order to lay the template for sanitizing our political space and restore the image of the party and our democracy.
One also needs to admonish the security agencies to live up to their constitutional responsibility by carrying out diligent investigation of the allegations of abuse of public trust against Honourable Yakubu Dogara and others by Hon. Jibrin and refuse to be influenced by extraneous forces.
Nelson Ekujumi, wrote this piece from Lagos.