I was glad when I read the breaking news that President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan (GEJ) has signed the electoral reform bill into law. Even though the bill falls far short of our expectations that it would endorse wholesale the Justice Uwais Electoral Reform Panel Recommendations, it still does contain a lot of provisions that would help ensure a free and fair election in 2011 and beyond. The appointment of a social crusader and activist like Professor Jega as INEC Chairman is also a pointer to the possibility that we will have a historic election we can all be proud of next year. Having said the foregoing, all these efforts would be fruitless if we the electorate fail to register to vote, fail to vote and fail to guard our votes in the 2011 election. We have seen the positive effect of free and fair elections in most developed nations where leaders are accountable to the electorate and can be recalled by the voters at any time. Where former Presidents have been sent to prison for various offences committed while they were in office. Where the law is Supreme and is enforced against everyone irrespective of their status.
No matter how much more of our resources (agriculture, coal, natural gas, bitumen, precious stones etc) we are able to explore and exploit in the next decade, not having the right leaders with the right mindset in power for the next 10 years means that Nigeria will continue to hug the bottom of the global development index when countries like China and Singapore that were on the same level with us 30 years ago are leapfrogging other nations.
You are the hero that can turn things around with your votes. No matter how many capable candidates are thrown up by the electoral process, if you fail to vote they will not make it into power and the nation will continue to drift.
The importance of Voting is so sacred and so important for our nation that you need to see it as a matter of life and death.
Can you imagine how many Nigerians would be alive today if we had working and well equipped hospitals. If we had good roads. If we had stable electricity that allows industry to thrive and grow and create millions of jobs?
The cost of not voting is a slow but steady emasculation and pauperization of the people of Nigeria by the political parasites that have enslaved the people since 1960! It is time to Vote or Die!!