- Category: Prince Charles Dickson
- Published on Monday, 30 July 2012 17:10
- Written by Prince Charles Dickson
No matter how beautiful an ostrich egg is, if it doesn't hatch, cannot be eaten, then it’s no good. One fundamental thing one notices that we lack in governance and government is the word good. Many Nigerians talk and agree that good governance is the only guarantee to peace, progress, stability, free, fair andcredible elections, infact
it is viewed as the only passport to delivering thedividends of democracy, just as credible practice of democracy should beanchored on good governance.
It is the bedrock for social justice, equity and fairness. For the power, the manufacturing sectors, education and largely for the nationto work, we need good governance, in order to maximise our potential, improvethe general welfare of the Nigerian people and even development ingeo-political terms, there must be good governance.
But like the late Okadigbo puts it, "asked to definegood most Nigerians will waffle and babble".
Most of our leaders that pride themselves as operating underthe parameters of good governance cannot explain how.
What we have is a battery of contradictory description orproposition as to what good governance is, as a matter of fact the term good isdifficult to define and in the essential contexts of the Nigerian condition.
Before I go far, defining good in relation to governance hasoften been a difficult task, to categorize it for decision makers and policyexecutors, so we say in political science that good is that to which everythingtends, and in that regard indefinable and a naturalistic fallacy.
In the Nigerian context, our situational ethics sets thetone to the effect that we have a relative dysfunctionality, what is good inone place may be bad in the other, there must be a given situation, time and space.
Under this little intellectual exercise we can say that thetalk of good governance in and for Nigeria, past, present and future is idle,not lending itself to any objective and precise analysis and this is why ourleaders take us for a ride, they promise bridges where there are no rivers andtake bald men to the saloon for a barb.
So until good governance is viewed as the process ofdecision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented (or notimplemented) we are still far off.
We will continue to lack good governance because despitepolitical activity under the guise of democracy we are yet to find the balance;we still operate a political economy of state robbery, rather than popular democracy.
Good governance within the confines of a popular democracyshould be anchored on two things, one, a constitution suited to the specialneeds and circumstances of Nigeria as multi-dimensional ethno-socio andecono-political structure: and two a leadership suited not only to the exigentneeds of Nigeria as an unlawfully under-developed but also to the smoothoperation of the same constitution.
We should stop glossing and know that by and large goodgovernance require no ordinary type of leadership; tolerance; breadth ofoutlook, intellectual comprehension; hardwork; selfless devotion;statesmanship; a burning sense of mission are some of the virtues that arenecessary to make a success of leading this nation.
Unfortunately past and present administrations have lackedthese virtues or at best have possessed one at the expense of the other and assuch led them to groping in the dark on how to deliver good governance.
We have refused to cultivate a regime of leadership that hasshown a knack to develop a mental magnitude, as clear as our problems are,there seems a lack of ability in appreciating and grasping the salient detailsas well as most of the temporal and practical implications, of a givensituation or problem, and in our own case the problem is a lack of good governance.
In my honest thinking while we keep debating on the moralsor otherwise that good governance cannot be attained or not definable I saypart of the problems will remain because it remains platitudinous rather thanobligatory on our leaders.
There is the problem of political in-direction, thus aneconomic morass in the polity, our lack of anything good is premeditated on ourinability to have an ideological notion of destiny. We have no coherent body ofthoughts; we have no heroes, nobody to look up to, good governance exists onlyin a vacuum.
Good governance requires fair legal frameworks that areenforced impartially. Full protection of human rights, particularly those ofminorities. It also means an independent judiciary and an impartial andincorruptible police force.
Decisions taken and their enforcement are done in a mannerthat follows rules and regulations. Information is freely available anddirectly accessible to those who will be affected by such decisions and their enforcement.
Institutions and processes try to serve all stakeholderswithin a reasonable time frame.
Need of mediation of the different interests in communitiesto reach a broad consensus in society on what is in the best interest of thewhole nation and how this can be achieved.
It also requires a long-term perspective for sustainablehuman development and how to achieve the goals of such development. Ensuringthat all members of the society feel that they have a stake in it and do notfeel excluded from the mainstream.
This requires all groups, and especially the most vulnerableto have opportunities to maintain or improve their well being.
Processes and institutions produce results that meet theneeds of society while making the best use of resources at their disposal. Italso means sustainable use of natural resources and the protection of the environment.
In general organizations and institutions are accountable tothose who will be affected by decisions or actions. The only minus and indeedthe major constraint is that all that I have enumerated as a recipe for goodgovernance is what we lack.
The Marako saga has shown that even Lagos state and its can paraphernalia lacksit, as we criticize that one partysystem at the national level, the CAN remains Tinubu and family, CPC strugglesto get a hold…It is about good governance, a populace that just wants the goodof governance.
It still remains a case of a useless ostrich egg, pursuingan impeachment to what end, a dog eat dog and leave wolf. All probes and noaction naked dance, Jonathan is just a pawn in the hands of the system, a happyman but not really the problem. Witherway, find good governance or only time will tell...
Prince Charles Dickson