2015: Need For Political Parties In Imo State To Maintain Internal Democracy – By Emeka Diwe


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It has thus become expedient to draw from our ugly experience of the past, to determine in the present, what would be good for us in future.

It would be recalled that part of what made our past political experience better and awful, especially as regards selection of political office holders, was essentially the undemocratic way and manner aspirants were selected. These undemocratic processes ranged from appointment, god fatherism; favouritism, presidential favourites, outright purchase of ticket by the highest bidder, amongst others. These undemocratic practices at the primaries can only breed wrong and undesirable candidates.

If you don’t get it right at the primaries, it is most unlikely you will get it right at “secondary” and higher levels. Most things that start well, ends well. Charity they say begins at home. If you have sufficient political discipline from your home, it will be easily carried to higher levels of political completion and that makes for peaceful political transition.


Absence of genuine objections, petitions & revolts: When candidates emerge via free and fair competition, objections, petitions & harmful revolts will be a thing of the past. Exodus from the parties will be minimized, as there would be no genuine aggrieved member.

Emergence of most popular candidates: Internal democracy at the primaries throws up the most popular candidates who stand a better chance of winning even at higher levels.

Peace: It is guaranteed when there is free and fair democratic process at the primaries. Political killings, abduction and violence are reduced to the barest minimum.

Less expensive: Unnecessary campaign cost of bribing voters is eliminated, when the campaign is made less expensive. Another said aftermath of this act of bribing voters is that if the candidate eventually wins, he will first steal tax payers’ money to replenish. And the grassroots suffer.

Among the three major ethnic groups in Nigeria today the Igbos are supposed to be leading in democratic status. The Igbos are essentially republican as against the Hausas and Yorubas who are essentially monarchial, even before the whiteman came to Nigeria with democracy. Since republicanism is closest to democracy and by now the Igbos should have advanced more in democracy than others. It is a source of great worry to us that today Ndigbo have not advanced in democracy as expected.


Get it right, the Association of Imo state Indigenous Town Unions though no partisan, is definitely political. Our motto, slogan and cardinal objective is “Development to the Grassroot.” Political development is a very important and critical aspect of human development. Political education and sensitization, mobilization, seminars, teaching the citizenry the essence and advantage of peace and democratic political process are all statutory responsibilities of the Town Union leadership as direct managers of the grassroot.

Besides, politics they say, is all about interest, acquisition and protection of power. The Town Union leadership has the elected mandate of the people to acquire and protect the development interest of the society. The leadership therefore, cannot remain silent and comatose in the politics of development within its operational area of mandate coverage.

Moreover, the positive and negative of political struggle, manoeuvering and “Katakata” fall directly on the grass roots. That is to say, the masses gain most when there is political success by way of peaceful co-existence, good roads, education, health care, public utilities, job opportunities, youth empowerments. The same grassroots suffers most when there is political failure by way of loss via political killings.

It therefore imperative that the direct nongovernmental leadership and manager of this grassroots should be very sensitive to the political situations in any given area, taking the people to political calculations that are most likely result to political disasters.

Perhaps, our greatest concern stems from the fact that in most recent time, the existence of town unions in Imo state has come under severe threat as a result of apparent misunderstanding, misinformation and deliberate blackmail by some unscrupulous political sycophants. It therefore makes it imperative that we start on time to put things straight.


We have deliberately chosen to ventilate this advisory appeal and subtle warning now that all political institutions and personalities are still on the same level playing field since party primaries have not yet been conducted for the 2015 general elections. Therefore at the appropriate time, and if the need arises, we shall not hesitate to condemn and discourage with all legitimate means at our disposal, those who abuse democratic processes at the party primaries. We will at the same time encourage and support those who are ‘democracy compliant’ even at the primary level.

We have made this submission in utmost good faith and in the best interest of the society. It takes all of us to jointly nurture and advance our nascent democracy to the desired level.

Chief Emeka Diwe, National President, Association of Imo state Indigenous Town Unions, wrote from Owerri.



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