OPINION: Is menace of vote-buying a governance problem?
Without disputing facts, vote-buying during election is really affecting our electoral system in the country. It is a pity that some people no longer see vote buying as a problem but rather part and parcel of the system.
Nigeria needs a national campaign and a national discussion around vote-buying. A situation where elections are determined by the highest bidder or the highest spender makes a mockery of our democracy, it diminishes human dignity but most importantly, it also questions the legitimacy of election outcomes.
What is disturbing is the level of impunity of political actors who engaged in this illegal and corrupt act. You go to polling stations and polling stations have become market places, where everybody see it as normal thing.
What that tells you is that it appears we have accepted this as a norm and as part of our electoral process and it is very sad.
Finally, permit me to hit on the nail that the menace of vote-buying is a governance problem, it is an indictment on the political class that they failed to lift people out of poverty, to provide the dividends of democracy and so they use that against the people. We all need a proper orientation as regards vote-buying. Vote buying can never enhance the dividends of democracy but rather worsen the situation.