One of the grievous mistakes of colonial legacy in Nigeria is the deliberate and constitutional exclusion of traditional institutions in decision making. Despite the over 1000 years of dynamic heritage and important leadership, particularly in the North, these institutions are only able to secure a ceremonial mention and a consultative role under the Local Government System section 2, subsection b (ii) of the Constitution of Nigeria. As old as Great Britain, the country still upholds and enjoys the value, integrity and stability of its traditional institution. How Nigeria can achieve that remains, as far as I’m concerned, a critical issue for the so-called cream of the crop, especially given the lack of probity that cloaks the current political system.
You don’t need the genius to understand that the lack of values in our political system which is characterised by insensitivity and incompetence is a result of the loss of cultural ideals and rectitude which are the core standards of every traditional institution in the world. Institutions with monumental legacy would never turn a blind eye to what they have built gradually with over thousand years of hard work and sheer resilience being destroyed over night! Everyone attests to the fact that, traditional institutions promote proper grounding of character, hard work, protection of the land and service to the people.
The only institution that shares this great approach toward developing a sound and disciplined society is the military. Don’t begin to think I’m an anti-democracy or I’m an advocate for a military junta. No. I so much cherish the values contained in a democratic system, but principally object the experimentation of a foreign system in a different context without taking into cognizance the dynamics of the new environment. This is just what democracy’s done to most African countries, and it’s on now to the Middle East. It does not only destroy the political history of the continent but also gives way for partisan scrambles that often result in regional, religious and ethnic violence.
I’d love a global and template democracy that is customizable to the character and characteristics of people, a system that wouldn’t care about your background, religious or ethnic affiliations, but would of your character, competence and conscience. I’d love a democracy that would build upon existing values of traditional institutions with necessary adjustments that can be achieved evolutionarily and not by avoidable revolutions, as in the case of Arab countries.
This kind of democracy would inevitably build diverse societies that espouse common goal for the liberty and integrity of mankind.
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