On Thursday 30 May, The Daily Report programme on radio (Star 101.5FM) examined 20 years of unbroken democratic rule in Nigeria and asked listeners what they thought the country had achieved in that time.
The reaction was unmistakably negative.
“Nigerian politicians have made democracy a bitter pill to swallow for majority of the citizens since 1999,” tweeted Oluwatosin Oyedele. “Frankly speaking we have progressively regressed and regressively progressed.”
For Emmanuel Iheme, Nigerians have given power to the wrong set of individuals, whom he described as “clueless and self seeking”. Wondering if truly Nigeria is a democracy, he added: “20 years of democracy in Nigeria, nothing to show for it; maybe democracy isn’t an African thing. How do we even explain the stupendous stagnancy bewildering Nigeria today to our Children?”
Canice Ifeanyi had this to say: Twenty years of uninterrupted democracy does not mean that our expectations have been provided. Rather it has been the worst period in history. Democracy in Nigeria is punishment to the people”
Both guests in the studio seemed to agree.
“Why in 20 years can we not provide water and electricity to our people? The only solution, after my analysis, is fiscal federalism and restructuring.,” Barrister Fred Nzeakor wondered. “This [election] year has been a charade. The next four years will be a complete charade.”
To halt the stagnation, Chuks Nwoko said the solution would be to do away with the National Assembly, as is, “because it is a major drain on the little we get from the crude oil..This political class cannot bring salvation to us in Nigeria.”
Though also disappointed that not much has been achived in two decades, Zachariah Taningbola tweeted: “We can do better if our leaders are ready to work patriotically and faithfully.”