Since the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission released the local council election time-table for next year election, politicians of various shades and colours who are eager to be on the saddle of leadership at the third tier of government have been employing different means of communication to reach and convince unsuspecting hearts and minds of people to cast their votes for them.
It is on record that during, and before elections, most politicians can best be described as accessible and reachable through telephone and personally, as they play with emotions of the people using sugar coated tongue, cheap propaganda and giving out peanuts to buy hard earned votes of majority of already impoverished electorate. 1999, the year the engine of democratic governance was re-kick started till date, should by now be a great blessing to the masses if promises made to the people have been met even half way. But rather, much premium has been placed on acquiring vanity packaged as huge personal accounts, building numerous personal estates with values for above their income in just few years in office.
Surveying the Jettisoned the good governance social contract politicians have with the people, we ask, who should be blamed for the low level of development in the two local councils of Ika nation? While it is easy to cast the stone on those group of politicians who deliberately deceive or mislead the electorate, should the voters be completely absolved from our poor developmental predicaments? Voters who open their eyes and willfully mortgage their conscience, who are myopic, narrow minded, and who only want their pockets filled with peanuts but do not see the global picture of better local council areas built by great leaders with resources allocated and generated by the councils, cannot be exonerated.
Not too long ago, the tenure of Barr. Francis Eborka and Mr. Fred Ofume, the erstwhile local council chairmen of Ika North East and Ika South areas came to an end. Ika people should be asking whether anything has changed since the elected officers and their councilors left office. While office did they amass wealth did they impact the lives of the youths and communities at large? Has sanitation and primary healthcare improved? Has our abattoirs become better than they met them? Have trader stopped selling or displaying their wares on the walkways? Has the interaction through regular town hall meetings made remarkable impact on Ika communities?
The vicious circle of low development may just continue without meaningful development for the people, who after having endured to secure voters card will in January also defy the weather to vote in their representatives. Just last month, November, due to the low level of apathy and lack of confidence in democratic governance in Anambra state, votes, mostly youths and women insisted on trading their voters for cash. Vary appealing we may say, but that is the reality on ground as reported from that election. Be that as it may, good governance remains the building block for a well structured society.
Currently, the engine of poverty is grinding on most Nigerians who are finding it hard to make ends meet. The hardship experienced may not last if those governing and governed do the needful. Party candidates, who are reputed for keeping promises and who do not have penchant for misleading the people, deserve to be appreciated.
The truth all of the time benefit those who live by it. Ika nation at the local level ought to be better politically and otherwise. Ika people should awaken and consciously vote not just anyone but the right candidates that will take Ika nation to the next level of development.