Contemporary independence does not end at being free from the rulership of another country. It is synonymous to democracy, entailing in it its internal political affairs. The African continent has about 54 independent states. On analysis, elections are seen as a sole indicator of a thriving democracy.
According to the former UN Secretary General- Kofi Annan “Democracy is not just about one day every four/five years when elections are held, but a system of government that respects the separation of powers, fundamental freedoms like the freedom of thought, religion, expression, association and assembly and rule of law… Any regime that rides roughshod on these principles loses its democratic legitimacy regardless of whether it initially won an election”.
2015 and 2016 years have witnessed tremendous scenarios in the political scenes in African States from presidential to parliamentary and to other localized elections. African countries witnessed how far its leaders were willing to go in order to hold onto power as some leaders attempted to alter constitution to favor them. Countries such as Tanzania which has seen Africa’s longest serving ruling party, the CCM ruling for 54years. Others including Togo, Guinea, Cote D’voire and the like of President Pierre Nkurunziza of Burundi.
However, right here in Africa’s western region, exists Africa’s largest democracy which saw in 2015 a 16 year ruling party losing to its main opposition. Nigeria, thus, broke the stereotype, showcasing itself as a cradle of democracy yet in Africa as results were widely accepted both by the citizens as well as the international community.
As we celebrate our independence( on October 1), let us be mindful of who we are, what we share and the ideologies we believe, in as a great people making up a great nation, by standing for the democracy we believe in.
Happy Independence Nigeria.
Link To Article: https://youth-journal.org/happy-59th-independence-nigeria