A Virile Opposition Is Welcome


The decision by the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, not to participate in the so-called unity government being planned by President Goodluck Jonathan of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, is a welcome development and a ray of hope for the sustenance of the country’s democracy.

It is a welcome development because it is a deviation from the norm where the winning party usually co-opts the losing parties into a coalition to rule the country. In most cases, the coalition doesn’t work and it results in wrangling and internal squabbles which often undermine the efforts of the government and prevents it from facing its responsibilities effectively.

It also stifles robust opposition and shortchange the people. It makes the government unaccountable because those that could have checked its excesses have been coopted and bought over.

The ACN said it can never cohabit with PDP because “light and darkness can never co-habit.”

We also found it reassuring that the party which has tagged itself as the party of the future and government-in-waiting and has denied reports that it has been allocated five ministerial slots in the incoming cabinet of President Jonathan.

According to the ACN, no amount of shenanigans by those who are planting such devious stories will force it to rescind its decision not to participate in the Government of National Unity, GNU.

In every virile democracy as practised in the advanced countries of the world, the opposition is an essential ingredient of the system. Apart from keeping the government on its toes, the opposition also serves as an alternative should the electorate be dissatisfied with the performance of the government in power.

This is why in advanced democracies, the opposition also forms a shadow cabinet to monitor the activities of government and expose its inadequaties so that the people can be better informed when making a choice in subsequent polls.

Apart from monitoring the activities of government and offering constructive criticisms of its policies, the oppostion is in a position to enlighten the people on the need for a change in administration to improve the welfare of the people.

Related News

It is in the light of these that we applaud ACN’s decision to serve as a virile opposition to the ruling PDP government. We also agree with the party that participating in a unity government has the tendency of creating a one-party state with its attendant shortcomings.

In the United States and Britain, the opposition serves as a bulwark against oppressive and inept government.

In the former, both the Democratic party and the Republican party have different ideals and principles which are distinct and have been serving the American people.

In Britain, the Labour and Conservative parties also represent different ideologies embraced by the people to better their lot.

Nigeria too cannot be different, especially at this stage of our democracy. We need a robust opposition that will keep the government in power on its toes to do the biddings of the electorate.

It is our contention that Nigerians can no longer be taken for a ride by an inept and rudderless government. By choosing to be in opposition and refusing to partake in the ‘chop-I-chop’ arrangement which is the hallmark of previous opposition parties in the country, ACN has demonstrated that it is interested in the general good of the masses.

We commend this step and urged others to emulate the party.


Load more