Nigeria’s democracy at 21

The journey into pure democracy in Nigeria started from June 12, 1991, when an unprecedented free and fair election was conducted to usher in the democratic government of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo. This put an end to military rule in Nigeria and since, periodic elections have become legal tools

Though the journey has not been smooth as there are many hurdles to cross, it has not been too bad since we are still on course.
An appraisal of the four administrations since the inception of democracy has left much to be desired in the history of the nation. Democracy has suffered a lot of mishaps in these eras so much so that fundamental principles of democracy have been thrown overboard.

The 21 years of democracy in Nigeria still suggest that we are not mature, and as such incomparable with developed countries with their advanced democracy as they are older than us.

This is not to exonerate us from our ill democratic practices like election malpractices, nepotism, corruption, money politics, godfatherism etc, but despite this, we need to congratulate ourselves for the journey so far and be encouraged to do better and not derail as a worse civilian government is better than a benevolent military regime.

However, it is noteworthy that democracy has come of age in Nigeria at 21 years old and it calls for a moment of joy despite its shortcomings.

Fatai Adewuyi,

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