Killings As Carnival For Electoral Victory in Nigeria
ElevateNews takes a look at the violence and killings during and after the Kogi governorship polls.
National Youth Corps members have become defenceless in Nigeria in recent time. The Independent National Electoral Commission engage them as ad-hoc staff for elections where some of them have been killed in the name of serving their father’s land.
In the last Kogi State election, a corps member was killed in a violent election won by the incumbent Governor Yahaya Bello of the All Progressives Congress. There are various reports that about seven persons died in the election, including a nephew of Senator Dino Melaye.
The conduct of our elections has gone worse compared to what the country witnessed in 2015. The rates of violence, killings and riggings are so high that death is so cheap now.
Even after the election, the supporters of the ruling party went wild on the streets of Lokoja in Kogi State to attack members of the opposition to celebrate their victory.
They would not pop Champaign or declare free food but visited mayhem on leaders of the opposition, killing the woman leader of the Peoples Democratic Party in the process. Why killing a woman whose party just lost an election?
The election had been won. Her political party had been declared the loser. The APC supporters went beyond the ordinary to kill a woman and a few numbers of the opposition for what?
It is now left for a quality leader with a conscience to do the needful. Because even during a war, there are limits soldiers should not cross. Once your men cross such lines, it is your sacred responsibility to met out punishment. Thus, President Muhammadu Buhari has a sacred responsibility to bring the killers of the PDP Woman Leader in Kogi State to justice.
Bringing the killers to justice, for me, has a lot to do with history. Already, Mr President has a badly dented image on human rights issues: Dasuki, Shiites, Sowore and a host of others. Buhari should remember Harry Marshall and the others killed for political reasons. Mr President made a promise during his first term to unmask the killers and bring them to justice. He failed, woefully, on that score.
This is current. It was done under his watch. The killers are very easy to fish out because they are foot soldiers of the ruling party. They went beyond their brief. And that should not be condoned. If Buhari fails to act on this one, Mr President should rest assured that he has laid a sure foundation for worse things against leaders of his party during future elections.
The murderers should not go free. If they do, reprisals from that side may not be limited to Kogi State alone. There is already a feeling that we are under a military regime. And, it stands to reason that many will resort to self-help, which is a definite route to anarchy. And when that happens, not even those living in Government Houses will be safe.