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THE EFFECT OF POLITICAL CORRUPTION ON NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS (A STUDY OF ANAMBRA STATE 1999-2010)
1.0 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Nigeria and political corruption – political corruption is not a recent phenomenon that pervades the Nigerian state.
Since the creation of modern public administration in the country, there have been cases of officials misuse of resources, embezzlement of funds, looting of government property for personal enrichment “the rise of public administration and the discovery of oil and natural gas are two major events seen to have led to a litany of ignorable corrupt practices in the country over the years, the country has seen its wealth withered with little to show in living condition of the common man.
In this view, a Nigerian political leader, Obafemi Awolowo raised a silent issue when he said since independence, of few holding the cow for the strongest and most cunning to milk”, under those circumstances everybody runs over everybody to make good at the expense of others. Characteristically, apologist for the failings of African governments have blamed colonist for the pervasive corruption. According to this view, the nations’ colonial history may have restricted any easily influence in an ethnical revolution through out the colonial period. Most Nigerians were stunk in ignorance and poverty. The trapping of flash cars, houses and success of the colonialists many influence the poor to see the colonialist as symbols of success and to emulate the colonists in different political ways.
Involvement in the agenda of colonial rule may also inhibit idealism in the easily stage of the nascent nations’ development. A view common held during the colonial days was that the colonists property (cars, houses, farms etc) is not our property.
Thus vandalism and looting of public property was not seen as a crime against society.
This view is what has degenerated into them or sent disregard for public property and lack of public trust and concern for public goods as collective national property.
According to Sen (1999 p. 225) states that corruption is “an effort to secure wealth or power through illegal means private gain at public expenses or a misuse of public power for private benefit”.
Therefore electoral corruption includes the purchase of vote with money, promises of offices or special favours, coercion, intimidation and interference with freedom of election (Nigeria is a good example where this practice is common, botes are bought, people are killed or maimed in the name of election, losers end up as the winners where voters turns up in areas where vogues were not cast.
Generally, the implication of political corruption appears in different forms such as electoral corruptions, bribery, fraud, embezzlement, extortion, nepotism godfatherism, favouritism, madness of second tenure system and others.
The implication of political corruption as an impediment to the economical, social cultural and political stability is not a recent phenomenon that pervades the Nigerian state.
It started as far back as the colonial era among the colonists but grown to its apex / climax since, the creation of modern public administration in the country.
There have been cases of official misuse of resources for personal enrichment. Nigeria’s political godfathers, which came into existence as a result of inability of some aspirants of political officers to afford or sources their fund to run the election political godfathers there are those who are the powerful wealthy men who sponsor the political aspirants in Nigeria palace known as political godfathers in which their political fathering activities has been culminating to political polarizations, political traumas, political upheavals and political brouhaha which has become the talk of the day.
What is known as Anambra state today was created as far back as 1991 under the leadership of Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida, Anambra today is one of the largest and dominating southeast state and comprises of (21) twenty one local governments.
Since 19991, the violence, corruption and godfatherrism” occurring elsewhere in Nigeria have run a rampant in Anambra since then Anambra has been proved by some political analysis to remain the eyes of the most political corrupt state in Nigeria in which a wealthy member of Chris Uba is an iconic example of the godfathers phenomenon in Nigeria as a prove in 2003 Anambra gubernatorial election when PDP candidate Dr. Chris Nwabueze Ngige was sponsored and financed to rig the 2003 election in Anambra which the whole world witnessed their high level of electoral rigging, political irregularities political quagmires, political traumas and political upheavals as a result of godfatherrism, favoritism second tenure madness, nepotisms and other. By virtue of this unattainable agreement between Dr. Christ Nwabueze Ngige and his godfather Christ Uba, the two political gladiators degenerated a series of political traumas, electoral irregularities riggings, thurgry, kidnapping, killing, vandalization, false impeachment and all
1.1 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM Nigeria as a nation is facing serious political corruption problems namely:
i Lack of political education
ii Godfatherism concept
iii Electoral irregularities
iv Lack of party ideology
v Political polarizations, upheavals, quagmires, traumas and brouhaha.
vii Ethnicisms, nepotism, sectionalism and tribalism among the politicians.
vii Madness of second tenure concept
viii Lack of patriotism among he leaders
x High level of insecurity
xi Poverty at its climax heralding to high level of thugry and violent.
xii Centralization of power at the state level a case study of Anambra.
From all indications, challenges are daily, weekly monthly and yearly and may be to complete in the near future, unless there is a panel committee set up to eradicate the situation. However, they have to educate and internalize the masses to a lager extent using electronic voting system as to ensure transparency, justice, equity, good condense and free and fair elections. A question just came to my mind now, saying how can massive thurgry, been reduced in Anambra state election? The answer says that there should be an adequate provision of job opportunity as to engage the youths in one job or the other so that it will limit their state of poverty as an off-shoot of thurgry.
Based on these, the researcher has to vividly analyze those things that contributes to political corruption and its effect in Anambra state.
1.2 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The purpose of this study is to examine and provide the following in depth through analysis of political stability in Nigerian government and polities.
i To provide adequate political education to the Anambra youth and other politicians.
ii To provide suitable environment to enhance political stabilities.
iii To give a stop to luke warm concept of godfatherism in politics.
iv To provide job opportunities to Nigerian & Anambra youths to reduce the level of poverty which has been an offshoot of massive thurgry and kidnapping during election.
v To give proper causation and warning to the fraudulent INEC officials on the side of their electoral fraud and regulates which has been culminating to political traumas and qaugmire in Anambra state.
vi To mandate the state government to delegate power to the local government level as to enhance mass participation and political enlightment.
vii To ensure political stability which may conversely heralds to free and fair election in Anambra state
viii To encourage electronic voting system in Anambra state for more effective and efficient politicking and free and fair elections.
ix To ensure mass participation in the political activities
x To ensure adequate party ideology in Nigeria government and politics.
More so, the study has the following aim to explain why Anambra state elections had never once been conducted free and fair.
1.3 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The researcher put down the following questions when he was carrying out this project.
i To what extent does political corruption affects the Anambra state political, social and economical lives of people?
ii What ways could the political leaders, followers and INEC officials would be baptized (improved) so as to ensure higher equity, transparency, free and fair elections?
ii How can electronics voting system effect or culminates or heralds to free and fair election in Anambra state?
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study will be significant in the need to improve political stability in Nigeria with particular emphasis to Anambra state is imperative in the following.
i In the view of improving political equality among the Anambrarians.
ii In the view of eradicating high level of political illiteracy among the Anambra youths through political education.
iii This study will also be significant in finding solution to the rampant political thugry, mass kidnapping, frequent abductions, killing etc.
iv It will also be significant in eradicating high level of insecurity in Anambra state.
v This study will also be significant in prohibiting any thing concerning godfatherism in Anambra state.
vi This study will also be significant in effecting political stabilities thereby resulting to free and fair election heralding to credible representatives.
vii This study will be significant in giving room for the state government delegating political, financial and administrative autonomy to the local government in Anambra state.
viii This study will also be significant in enlightening Nigerian politicians with party ideology rather than their formal party without ideology system.
ix It will be significant in leaving little or no change for political irregularities, electoral fraud and other political traumas in Nigeria particularly Anambra state.
In this report, the researcher will also be significant in eradicating of political arsons, kidnapping and other political upheavals and how Anambra and its neighbouring states can benefit or gain from the refined effective and efficient political administration both economically, politically, socially and cultural harmony and stability.
1.5 THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
There are several ways of studying any phenomenon in any schoarlarly enquiry inorder to ensure a systematic and objective analysis for the purpose of this discourse I don’t prehendal theory of democracy working on the assumption that power is central to politics the starting point of Richard Joseph Prehendal theory is that the Nigeria political life is entirely characterized and dominated by corruption Omo O. (1993 p 16) central to prehenda analysis are the concepts of clietlism and prehendalism. He sees chetelism as patron diet ties clietlism he further argues is the very channel throng which one joins the dominant class and a practise which is then seen as fundamental to the continued enjoyment of the prequisties of that class. He define prehendalism as the procurement of office of state either through examinations or as a reward for loyal service to a lord or a rule A critical assignment of post independent Africa states reveals that to be ruler whether at the federal. State or local level is to be in charge of the treasury and use the wealth that properly belongs to the people to legitimately enrich party faithful investors in elections friends clients and proves godfather allies to sustain a corruption life style.
From the above prehensalism provide a framework through which Africa and Nigeria affairs as it relates to corruption and development can be studied higher equity, transparency, free and fair elections?
iii How can electronics voting system effect or culminates or heralds to free and fair election in Aambra state?
iv How has godfatherism contributed to the present high level of political brouhaha, political traumas, political upheavals in Anambra state?
v How does purchasing of votes, collection of votes, where and when election was not conducted nor votes being cast contributes to the electoral malpractices in Anambra state.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
In studying the political corruption in Nigeria government and politics, it becomes imperative to confine this to a democratic dispensation in actualizing transparency, equity, justice, good conscience and free and fair election to an extent within the constraint of time and of the study.
Consequently, Anambra state. government was used as a case study
1.7 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
Research was not problem free.
In this work, the researcher was faced or confronted with some major problems which tampered for hindered the progress of this work. Prominent among these was the issue of distribution of the questionnaires. The researcher used to go from local government to local government and from staff to staff, among the twenty one (21) local government in Anambra state. In research for the solution to the problem as a result of this, the researcher run these regular visits to different (Hpm) of the local governments.
More so adequate explanations was made to explain the need for questionnaires. The researcher spend more time going from one staff to the other in various offices in the state, that is time that they are suppose to use for another thing.
Also money for transportation to meet them i.e the staff in their various houses and a times, when you got to some, they will not respond to you some i.e the staff will just tell you that they do not have time to discuss anything with you concerning to that now.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
i. Corruption: in a layman understanding, corruption is defined as a perversion or change from good to bad. Therefore corrupt behaviour involves violation of established rules for personal gain and profit (Sen 1999 P. 275). Corruption is also an effort to secure wealth or power through illegal means for private gain at public expense or misuse of public power for private benefit
ii Godfathers in Nigeria: The term godfathers (alkla money bag, alkla loan-shacks) refers to superfluously very wealthy men (no known women yet) that finance elections.
Note: when the godfathers sponsor election, they normally cover the government treasury and control the government in order to recoup their investment.
iii Madness of second Tenure: This simply means the sit tight system adopted in Nigeria governance where by the governors, chairpersons, president will be on the government seat and lying or agitating for second tenure for him to be re-elected into the seat.
iv Political polarization: this simply means the dividing house (party) into different groups of people with different opinion or idea, in a state as a result of politics, i.e disapproval among the individual in the society as in Anambra politics.
v Political Brouhaha and upheavals: this is unnecessary estimate, criticism or activity especially in news report to show disapprovals.
vi Electoral corruption: This includes purchase of votes with money, promises of office or special favours, coercion, intimidation and interference with freedom of election.
vii Fraud: It involves some kind of trickery, swindle and detect counterfeiting, acketing, smuggling and forgery (Ibid Pu).
Viii Embezzlement: This is theft of public resources by public officials. It is when a state officials steals from the public institution in which he / she is employed.
ix Extortion: This is money and other resources extracted by the use of coercion violence or threats to use force. (Bafart et al 1997, P.11).
x Favouritism: this is a mechanism of power abuse implying a highly biased distribution of state resources.
However, this is seen as a natural human productivity to favour friends, fairly and anybody close and trusted.