Sometime in November, Mr Shehu Shema, the executive governor of Kastina state was caught on video calling on his supporters to kill and crush political opponents, whom he described as “cockroaches”. In the video in which the governor, clad in white agbada and brown sandals, addressing a rally in Hausa, compared opposition politicians to cockroaches. He went as far as helping the people he was addressing make up their minds just incase they were too slow or too humane to think of violence. He asked animatedly ‘what do you do to cockroaches?’ And when their response ‘kill them’ seemed too human and disappointing, he retorted ‘crush them!’ this unambiguously questions our judgments as Nigerians in electing men such as these into vital and sophisticated positions like governor. It insults the intelligence of voters. It also fundamentally asks the question if these men were knowingly or consciously elected. Were they elected really at all?
The desperation in the campaign of calumny capable of inciting violent tendencies in the polity by Nigerian politicians is overwhelmingly treasonable. Mr Shema, who is obviously more educated than the people he was addressing should know that the last time such comparism was made, hundreds of thousands of innocent people died under the machete within a few hours; machetes held and swung by their brothers and sisters, by their neigbours. This happened not too long ago and not too far from Nigeria – a small country called Rwanda. In recent history, this country has created an indelible mark in the mind of the world and is now associated with countries synonymous with genocides such as Germany.
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Even more recently, the governor of Ekiti state, Mr Fayose did a political advert in the front page of a national daily, using tax payers money of course. This campaign advert insinuated and predicted the death of Gen. Buhari if he got elected. Even more pathetic is the fact that this man, educated he is employed very illogical reasoning to arrive at his conclusion – one that he was so proud of that could not wait to share it with the rest of the world like a school boy who just had an ingenious idea capable of patent rights.
These attacks on persons and their personalities, petty name calling while neglecting the real and main issues of the country in the name of political campaigns is capable of inciting the polity emotionally into violence. Therefore, it is our position that all forms of campaigns should be restricted by law to national, regional, state and local debates organized by international neutral bodies by law. Perpetuators of these campaigns capable of threatening our national security should be immediately impeached and prosecuted. Our leaders are supposed to represent us. Therefore, this disgraceful public exhibition of wanton petty stupidity does not represent majority of Nigerians and should be done away with forthrightly.
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