It is unarguable that many Nigerian voters know nothing or little about politics and governance.
Bryan Caplan, an American economist wrote in his book titled _The Myth of the Rational Voter_ that “What voters don’t know would fill a university library.” You can put this to test by selecting ten random voters to the nearest bookshop or library around you. Pick at random ten different books on economy, history, political science, government, and you will find out that this American economist was correct about his statement, because it is possible that seven voters of these ten voters know nothing in those books, if not all the ten voters.
In fact, a lot of Nigerian electorates do not know who controls what aspect in the government so, they often vote based on political parties and candidates popularity.
I bet with you that many Nigerians that will vote in the forthcoming election are ignorant of the presented 2019 budget proposal by MR. PRESIDENT to the Senate house recently, not to talk of understanding the breakdown of the budget and how it would affect the country’s economy in 2019.
Now, how do we expect voters who do not know these little things to even know which candidate is competent and which candidate has the best economy policies?
While it is evidential that most voters are ignorant, some are still highly informed. Unfortunately, about 40% of the highly informed voters are badly informed. It turns out most highly informed voters process political information in deeply biased and partisan ways. Enough of them are politically informed but are being used as agents of political propaganda by cunning and selfish politicians. The ones that are not directly used by these cunning politicians, most times, consume news and information in a harmful manner, which makes them averagely informed citizens and this is as a result of the spurious information they receive.
Our Media outlets are also not helping the situation. Many of these Media outlets should be addressed as Media manipulators and agent of confusion, because they have contributed IMMENSELY in the circulation of fake news and evidences on politics. They are also paid by politicians to cover up and vindicate undemocratic practices of these politicians. Their fake news and fake evidences are usually on behalf of their clients against that clients’ opposition.
Few months ago, It was rumored that Mr President is dead and a cloned human identified to be one Jibrin from Sudan has been acting as Mr President. In fact, fake pictorial evidences were all over the media to prove this declaration.
A fake copy of Ex President, Goodluck Jonathan’s book titled _My Transition Hours_ was also circulated in less than 24hrs after he officially launched the book.
These two scenarios show that these information and evidences are aimed to deliberately create confusion amongst citizens and also to mislead and misinform them.
Meanwhile, most Nigerian politicians are neither creative nor intelligent, let me assume that most of them have learnt the art of being cunning and deceitful. They know the perfect way to get the ignorant voters, averagely informed voters and those I call the media manipulators dance to their tune.
A Nigerian journalist, Remi Adekoya, once said, “Politicians will always be more popular than intellectuals. A skillful intellectual forces you to think. A skillful politician relieves you of that duty.” These words literally described the relationship between our people and our politicians.
People ordinarily do not want to think. Thinking has became a tough work for a great number of our people. Have you ever wondered why political propaganda sells so fast? Well, it is because, there is no critical thinking to puncture it.
We dull down our thinking and accept empty promises. We most times do not weigh the feasibility of these promises, we just accept these promises the way they are packaged and presented to us.
It is just few days to Nigeria general election, Nigerians would still pick between Lucifer and Satan. That is the reality. I do not blame the people for their ignorance and negligence towards politics and governance, I blame the system! The system is designed in such a way that the majority would not be exposed to original political information.
Nigeria is currently one of those Nations that invests little in political and voters’ education. I still strongly believe Nigerians would vote for a competent leader someday, obviously not 2019 anymore.
Happy 2019 to my fellow Nigerians. May we continue to endure Nigeria and finally, enjoy it together someday.
I am Òtúnba Emeritus Ajíbólá, I believe the truth lives inside me and you.
Òtúnba Emeritus Ajíbólá