Democracy Day: Nigeria In A Classical State Capture - Obi  
Peter Obi

Democracy Day: Nigeria In A Classical State Capture – Obi  

1 month ago
2 mins read

Presidential candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 general election, Mr Peter Obi, has stated that Nigeria’s governance system has deteriorated into what he called a “classical state capture,” where a few are benefiting while many suffer deprivation.

He therefore called for a return to a truly democratic nation, adding that the feat can be achieved if all collectively vote for democracy in Nigeria as done on 12 June, 1993 that is being commemorated.

Obi made the call in a statement via his verified X handle on Wednesday, as the country marks her Democracy Day.

While posing the question of whether the country is truly democratic, Obi said it is now time “to re-examine what we have been doing over this quarter of a century. Democracy, as we know, is the government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

“While we may say that in 1999 we started in earnest in the right direction, today we have deteriorated into what can be classified as classical state capture. Instead of benefiting all, it has become a deprivation to all.”

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The former Anambra State governor observed that the consequences of not practicing a true democracy have led to leadership failures resulting in systemic corruption, high levels of insecurity, lack of freedom of speech, increasing poverty rates, hunger, and hardship.

According to him, “True democracy should be people-oriented, where the rights of citizens are respected, the laws are obeyed, the leaders remain accountable to the people, and people’s welfare and care, especially for the poor, become paramount and high priorities.”

“Unfortunately, the opposite is the case in our situation,” he lamented.

Obi further pointed out that evidence of Nigeria not being truly democratic can be seen in the various rankings of the country such as the Global Democracy Index score of 4.23, Corruption Perception Index, which ranked the country 145th among the 180 countries measured, 120th out of 142 countries measured in the World Justice Project (WJP) Rule of Law Index, and the 2024 World Press Freedom Index by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) which describes Nigeria as one of West Africa’s most dangerous and difficult countries for journalists with the rank of 112th out of 180 countries.

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He urged the citizens to stand in defence of democracy, obey all laws, and respect and protect all government institutions in the country.

“Let us, therefore, use the commemoration of June 12, as an occasion to return to a truly democratic nation. We achieved that feat on June 12, 1993, by collectively voting for democracy in Nigeria. We must stand in defense of Nigeria’s democracy today.

“I urge everyone to respect and protect the institutions of the democratic state, obey the governing laws of the state, be accountable to the people, and fulfill the responsibilities of responsible governance as contained in the constitution.

“As we build a New Nigeria, these tenets shall be the pillars of our true democracy. It is possible,” Obi stated.


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