Many prominent political actors who currently hold significant positions in political parties and public offices in this country since 1999, were mostly bystanders in the struggle for the return of democracy in Nigeria. Many of these political actors who reap enormous rewards from the political arena in which they made no sacrifices to attain are often reckless in their actions because they never paid the heavy price that many who struggled to earn the democracy they enjoy had to bear. These actors are , therefore, quick to make unguarded statements and think very little about jeopardizing the democratic enterprise in Nigeria at the slightest threat to the huge rewards they collect from the Nigerian people.
It is against the above background that my attention was drawn to some patently untrue and very laughable allegations against the Resident Electoral Commissioner of Akwa-Ibom State , Barrister Mike Igini, to the effect that he is complicit with some political actors in Edo state , with the intention of undermining the forthcoming Edo election. This is a very ridiculous and mendacious allegation given the attributes of Barrister Mike Igini that we all know as Nigerians. An uncompromising activist and a public officer per excellent who has shown exceptional character and integrity as an electoral commissioner. He fought for and was at the frontline of the struggle for democracy , a battle we all fought together against anti-democratic forces in Nigeria.
It is a stupendous mystery that political actors can be so brazen as to attack someone like Mike Igini that Nigerians hold so highly and respected for his astounding records in all the states where he had conduct elections and exhibited the kind of conduct expected of an umpire.
If these allegations are meant to act as a political strategy to stop Mike Igini from supervising a transparent and credible election that he is known for, it must be stopped forthwith as such recklessness is a danger to the consolidation of democracy in Nigeria. If they are intended to pull him down, a man who has served well to the admiration of Nigerians, they have failed because many people in the days ahead will continue to condemn this attempt to destroy one of the finest if not the best amongst us. There should be a threshold of good practices below which political actors should be sternly advised not to thread.
A word is enough for the wise.
Alhaji Yerima Shettima
National President Arewa Youths Consultative Forum