Politics: Issues and events that will shape 2013

| January 4, 2013 | 0 Comments

Without any iota of doubt, 2013 is going to be an interesting year in the political sector of Nigeria. In the new year, many issues are expected to shake the polity and the outcome of those events may either build or mar the polity.

Considering various issues that came up in 2012, many Nigerians will watch with keen interest events that will shape 2013 for the better.

Whichever way we look at it, examples of some of the major issues and events that will determine the situation in the new year are the emergence of a new chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Board of Trustees (BoT); registration and deregistration of political parties; merger of major opposition parties; Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) preparation for future elections, especially, the bid to forestall staggering elections; 2014 governorship elections in Anambra, Ekiti and State of Osun, and 2015 general governorship elections, insecurity and constitution review, among others.

PDP BoT contest

At present all hands are on deck in PDP towards the emergence of a new chairman of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the party.

The contest, which is expected to hold on January 8, has been narrowed down to about four major contenders, namely; former PDP BoT chairman and former Minister of Works, Chief Tony Anenih; former Senate President, Ken Nnamani; former PDP national deputy chairman (South), Alhaji Shuaibu Oyedokun and PDP chieftain, Chief Emmanuel Iwanyanwu.

Although the BoT is an advisory organ of the party, many political observers believe strongly that the emergence of the BoT chairman will set the tone for the direction the ruling party will go in future elections.

Some are of the view that whoever that emerge as the BoT chairman will play crucial roles in the emergence of who will fly the party’s presidential ticket in 2015, and obviously, that will impact on the political scene.

Insecurity

Security wise, Nigeria experienced a lot of hardships in 2012 as there were great records of killings, bombings and kidnappings in many parts of the country.

Many Nigerians, especially those living in the North were killed in 2012 by the dreadful Boko Haram sect, while many political gladiators in the South also faced the wrath of kidnappers.

Therefore, the federal government is expected to take a lot of measures this year to solve the security problems in the country. Needless to say how safe the environment is will go a long way in determining the political atmosphere in the country.

Registration and deregistration of political parties

One of the major issues that generated controversy in 2012 is the deregistration of political parties. Last year INEC deregistered about 35 political parties for not winning any elective positions at federal and state level. And if the words of INEC chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, is anything to go by, INEC is still going to deregister more political parties in the new year.

Considering the rate at which some of the political parties were deregistered last year, political analysts are of the view that some of the deregistered political parties may team up to register a new party. It is also not unlikely that some of the deregistered parties may eventually join the bid by the major opposition parties in the country to form a new party in the efforts to win the centre from the ruling PDP.

Merger of major opposition parties

If the words of some of the major opposition leaders are anything to go by, the three major opposition parties – Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) which are at present engaged in merger talks may, before March 2013, form a major opposition platform against PDP.

Apart from the three political parties, others such as All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Labour Party, Accord Party, among others, may join the train to form a political party to send the ruling PDP packing from Aso Rock come 2015.

2014 governorship elections

One of the issues that will surely generate public concern is the preparation for 2014 governorship elections in Anambra, Ekiti and State of Osun. Governorship elections are expected to hold in the three states and politicians and political parties in the states are going to embark on a lot of political permu- tation and combination to outsmart one another.

In Anambra State, Governor Peter Obi of All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) is expected to leave office in March 2014 after finishing his second term in office, while Governors Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State and Rauf Aregbesola of State of Osun are expected to seek second term in 2014 on the platform of ACN.

In view of the 2014 governorship elections, there is going to be lots of political campaign and those jostling for the governorship positions will privately or publicly declare their interest for the race.

Among the three governorship elections that will take place in 2014, there will be more attention on Anambra State, where governorship primary is expected to hold this year to elect political party flag bearers for the election.

Among those that seem to have interest in the Anambra governorship race are former governors of the state and members of the National Assembly, Senator Chris Ngige, Andy Uba and former member of the National Assembly, Senator Annie Okonkwo, among others.

In the case of Ekiti and State of Osun, considering the outcome of the last October 20 governorship election in Ondo State, ACN and the PDP will do everything possible to outsmart each another in the election.

At presence, ACN has a firm grip of the South-West and therefore, will do everything possible not to lose the two states. PDP on its own part will also work toward winning the two states as part of their plan to reclaim the South-West.

2015 general elections

Though 2015 general elections is still about two years away, the preparations toward the 2015 election have started as politicians and political parties have started positioning themselves for 2015.

Following the intrigues going on and the pasting of the second term posters of President Goodluck Jonathan in strategic places in Abuja on Tuesday, many serving governors and members of the National and State Assemblies are likely to declare this year for second term privately and publicly ahead of 2015 general elections.

This year, many of the foot soldiers of President Jonathan and governors seeking second term will kick start business to drum support for their leaders. Many of the foot soldiers will also embark on strategic and massive campaigns to ensure that their candidature for 2015 is accepted by the people at the state and national level.

Also, in some of the states where their governors are expected to leave office in 2015 after serving for eight years, many people have started showing interest in governorship seats. Therefore, many people may throw their hats into the ring for the governorship and other elective positions this year.

Among states where attention will be given this year toward 2015 governorship race are Lagos, Rivers, Jigawa, Niger, Delta and Akwa-Ibom. On the the issue of presidency, some of those aspiring for the position are likely to kick-start the process by forming different groups and reaching out to political gladiators to emerge as their parties’ candidates and to have a smooth ride to the presidency.

The agitation for 2015 presidency between the North and South is surely going to be one of the issues that may generate some interest as usual. Ahead of 2015 presideny, the North, South-South and South-East are seriously positioning themselves for the best of opportunities. While South-South is clamouring that President Jonathan should be allowed to run in 2015 for the zone to enjoy the presidency for eight years, South-East is agitating that the zone should be allowed to have a taste of it.

There argument has always been that except for only six months since Nigeria independence in 1960, the zone has not had a feel of it.

The North on their own part is saying that power should shift to the North come 2015 to balance the North-South rotational presidency agreement. Therefore, the leaders of each of the zone will surely kick-start the process of achieving their presidency.

INEC’s preparation for election

Ahead of the three governorship elections in 2014 and the 2015 general elections, INEC will embark on serious preparations. There main aim will be to organize credible, free and fair elections.

Constitution review

According to the Deputy Senate President and the chairman of the Senate Committee on Constitution Review, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, the ongoing review of the 1999 Constitution will be completed in the third quarter of this year.

Therefore, if things work out as planned by the National Assembly, the lawmakers are expected to commence debates on the constitution review in April.

Therefore, the country may emerge with a reviewed 1999 Constitution, which many Nigerians have been yearning for, this year. Based on various issues raised during the federal, zonal, state and constituency public hearings organised by the National Assembly on the review of the 1999 Constitution, some of the issues that may be addressed in the constitution review are; state creation, gender discrimination, autonomy of the local governments, roles of traditional rulers, tenure of office of president and governors.

Culled from :Here

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