The Nonsense Of Elections Monitors From America And Europe
By: Paul I. Adujie
New York, USA
April 26, 2003
Why are Nigerians and Africans always willing to play catch-up in compliance with American and European inconsistent and ever shifting policies that have had avalanche adverse consequences on Africans? Why do Nigerians and Africans care what the BBC, VOA or EU, UK and USA thinks of our elections? Why do we need this insulting supervision? Why do we accept this condescending, patronizing and disrespectful oversight? If this is not colonialism, what is?
President Thambo Mbeki of South Africa and all reasonable and right thinking Africans should be asking and answering the question, why should Africans accept American and European supervised elections?
Good leadership for Nigeria and Africa must be what is determined by Nigerians and African peoples, without the palpable discourtesies of America and Europe, without the gloriously empty and strident criticism of elections result in Nigeria by the Americans and Europeans, criticisms that surprisingly coincides with the vehemence of the Nigerian opposition parties, particularly, the ANPP and APGA, even though these two parties and their candidates entered the contests too late and even the so-called flag bearers of both parties have had checkered and unsavory political histories and they therefore came to the elections with insurmountable baggage, that they could not overcome, and this was clear to all discerning persons from the moment of their late entry into the contests!
Since the just conducted elections in Nigeria, I have been grappling with the meaning and worth of African political and economic independence, it is perplexing!
Why have Africans allowed ourselves to play and continue to play the ward and vassals of America and Europe?
What is independence, what is sovereignty in the presence of this frenzied foreign interference in African internal domestic affairs?
Why are Africans so polite and nice to others, even though the Africans receive nothing for this lap dog behavior?
I am grappling with the meaning of independence amidst a lack of tangible respect for the African by the Americans and Europeans! Why are we not aggressive? Why do we always play nice to them?
Is this in anticipation of Foreign Aid? No! Not at all! It is true that both the informed and the ultimate ignoramus are agreed that Africa is the most needy of all-the world? But that has not ensured receipt of foreign aid flowing from America and Europe to Africa, on the contrary, the bulk of foreign aid does not flow to Africa!
Freedom of information enables anyone to ascertain the facts! In the US for example, anyone can check and verify the fact that 90 percent of American foreign aid is not directed towards Africa or at poverty alleviation, this information is publicly available through the US State Department, US Department of Defense etc.
Therefore, if the poor excuse for Africans not asserting themselves is explained by the fear of losing foreign aid from America and Europe, or the fear of not having loan guarantees from the IMF and the World Bank? It is very POOR excuse! The public record and the history of foreign aid by America and Europe clearly indicate that aid does not go to the neediest, or that aid is not determined by true need and so, foreign aid by US and EU countries are determined by other extraneous factors of geopolitics and not needs based assessments of aid recipients, the altruism or benevolence on the part aid donors, for the benefit or to uplift the target recipients!
Since the fall of the former Soviet Union (USSR) the IMF and the World Bank has given loans loan guarantees to Russia and the different republics that evolved from the former USSR, than these same financial institutions have given to African countries during the same period, lets say, since 1990 to 2000regardless of need and size of population.
Africans were never sworn enemies of America and Europe, but no one could say the same of the former Soviet Union! For several decades, the USSR was a sworn enemy of the US and Western Europe, the were mutually assured to destroy each other! They all armed themselves to the teeth for that single purpose! The Soviet Union was said to have committed large and disproportionate amount of its national resources to the pursuit of the destruction of capitalism, and the US and Western Europe, equally committed big chunks of their resources to the annihilation of communism and communist states!
In this contest, the USSR was the first to blink, hence the disintegration of the former Soviet Empire! The USSR�s economy faltered and crumbled, alas, the US and the West won the stare-down! The crumbling of the Soviet Union was said to have arisen from mismanagement, corruption and the single-minded devotion of a majority of its national efforts and resources to military defense hardware and the destruction of capitalism.
When the Soviet Union/USSR became self-destruct, the US and Western Europe rushed to the rescue of the Soviet Union/USSR! The US/Western Europe were falling over each other in stampede and haste to bail out the Soviet Union/USSR failed states and failed economy! Rushing to aid a formerly self-avowed sworn enemy? A former enemy who became self-destruct because of its blind pursuit of the destruction of capitalism which the US and Western Europe represented! When it comes to Eastern Europe, the US and Western Europe are magnanimous! How Africans? Who is rushing to our aid?
Conversely, Africans have never been avowed enemies of the US and Western Europe! Africans have never been sworn enemies of anyone! And yet, Africans have not received the corresponding amount of foreign aid, loans or loan guarantees when compared with the former Soviet Union/USSR and all of Eastern Europe in the formerly Soviet Union sphere of influence or satellite states! Add slavery and colonialism to this mix and you will arrived at exemplified disparities, double standard, inconsistencies and selective treatments meted onto the Africans historically and continuously!
I have also mentioned that monumental mismanagement and corruption that existed and still exists in disintegrated republics of the former Soviet Union! So, what explains the reasons why the countries of the Soviet Union and Eastern Europeans countries continue to receive foreign aid and other favors more than the ever permanently friendly and obedient Africans? Everyone, for the right or wrong reasons believes that the needs in Africa is dire and greater than in any place else, but why is it that foreign aid, loan and loan guarantees to Africa is non-existent or disproportionately less to Africans compared with countries of the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe?
Israel is famously the best friend and ally of the United States in the world and particularly in the oil rich Middle East which in the region of the world that the US considers strategically important to its national interests, and the US has for the better part of a hundred years poured money, loans, loan guarantees, armaments, intelligence, direct investment etc into Israel; And yet, Israel has quite often ran its domestic and foreign policies counter to America�s national and strategic interests! The US despite all its help for Israel, does not ever attempt to suggest, let alone dictate Israel�s domestic or foreign policy as the US and Europe do with the Africans! What is worse is that Israel, the friend and ally of the US has repeatedly been found spying on America! African spy?
North Korea is another current case in point, North Korea is not a friend of the US and it has made that clear over and over again, North Korea is not democratic! And yet, the US entered an agreement in 1994 to foot North Korea�s Utilities and Food bills, the US has done so upwards of ten years and continues to do so even as North Korea publicly declared actions that it has taken that are inconsistent with the agreement with the US, in pursuit of nuclear weapons and WMD etc.
The Vietnam war led to the premature death of more than 50,000 American military personal about 30 years ago and yet, the US has more investments and better economic and diplomatic relations with Vietnam than with Nigeria or any other African country for that matter! Please find or locate Vietnam on TI corruption index, Vietnam also has no democracy! So what is the basis of these disparities between their treatment of the Africans and the rest of the world?
Why then do Nigeria and other African countries feel the need to be polite and obedient to America and Western Europe? The US and Europe has a millionth percent more respect for Asians and Arabs than for the Africans, in matters of culture, politics, economy etc.
There are more democratic countries in Africa than in the Arab-world, there are more US and European investments in the Arab world! China is not democratic, Pakistan is not democratic and neither Afghanistan, but just look at the US and European interests, investments and engagements in these and other Asian countries and measure against a corresponding interest, investments and engagement with African countries! The disparities are permanent a feature, the inconsistencies are ingrained and inexplicable!
Why then are the Africans always playing catch-up? Why are the Africans always eager to comply? Always, Africans eager to please and be polite and obedient to US and the EU?
Begging is not a position of strength, Kneeling is not a position of strength or respect, all Africans must realize these and start to act accordingly! America and Europe has always benefited from Africa and Africans! From slavery to colonialism to Africa�s current scourge of brain drain, not to mention diamond, petroleum and other plethora of resources! Why beg? Why be compliant, why be polite and eagerly friendly? Especially when it has never worked and has never benefited the Africans! Why????
The world is interdependent, America and Europe truly need us more than we need them!
Africans are too friendly! And the Americans and Europeans have become accustomed to taking the Africans for granted, they have learned to be effortlessly insensitive to Africans� hopes and aspirations, they have learned to be disrespectful and to discountenance the feelings of Africans, they have learned to be disrespectful, patronizing and condescending to Africans and African interests! Why do we bother to please them always? Why do we bother to be polite, to please and be friendly? Appease America and Europe�s complacency about matter African? Why?
Why do we crave the approval and the supervision of America and Europe over our national elections? There were election frauds in Florida USA and in multitude of other states in America in the 2000 elections that awarded presidency to George Bush, and all discerning people are also aware that election irregularities were not peculiar to the 2000 elections in the US, there has always been movements in America for campaign and election reforms! African Americans are deprived of their fundamental rights and voting rights historically in America, this has been accomplished with gerrymandering, literacy and property litmus tests and many other hogwash barriers, obstacles and impediments are placed in the way of the African Americans in America, to stifle their progress!
Who monitored Americans then? Who monitors the Americans now? In Florida during the elections in 2000, the majority of those who were deliberately disenfranchised were disproportionately more of the African Americans citizens! What a wonderful coincidence! A coincidence that is consistent with American brutalities directed at the African Americans! The scalding, scathing and scorching indignities and inhumanities that has historically been directed at the African Americans is legendary but true and factually documented!
The same America now produces the National Democratic Institute and the National Republican Institute and these façade of democratic pretensions were allowed to �monitor� and �moderate� the general elections in Nigeria?!!!!! Whatever happens to the adage �Charity Begins At Home�!!! or Physician Heal Thyself or Physician Take Thy Own Medicine and the biblical one? Remove The Log Your Eyes Before The Peck In Others�? Why did Nigeria and why do Africans cede our economic, political and spiritual independence to Americans and Europeans? Why do we think them altruistic and benevolent? Why do we give them such high pedestal? Pedestals that they are quick to put into use in their permanently and consistently demeaning and disparaging words and actions regarding anything African?
Why did Nigeria invite or allow the Americans and Europeans to monitor our internal political processes? So that we can have a seal of approval from the BOSS? Why do we need a governess? Why do we need a guardian at litem? Why are we acting like colony or protectorate? Why is Nigeria and Africa polite, compliant and eager to be friendly? America and Europe has never done right by Africans and judging by historical data, they never will! Why do we always think that they wish us well and mean the best for us?
Here now we have the monitors� tactless and undiplomatic condemnations and damnations that is full of generalizations, here we now have report that does great disservice to democracy political institutional development, a report that goes beyond stating noted imperfections or benign flaws, instead the monitors have ambitiously, carelessly consigned the whole electoral process in Nigeria to a toxic dump and sore losers are seeking to cash in on it, for their selfish and individual benefit, the monitors� report that is replete with overbroad generalizations! �Nothing Works In Africa�
The land allocation dispute in Zimbabwe is a clear case in point, where Britain and others clearly jettisoned the pre-independence Lancaster House London Agreement that favored land redistribution in favor of Black Africans in Zimbabwe who are historically discriminated and marginalized in the distribution of land, a valuable resource and Britain has instead engaged in campaign of calumny against President Mugabe and the people of Zimbabwe in complete disregard for the wishes of the majority in Zimababwe.
United States joined Britain in blackmailing President Mugabe and pressuring Zimbabwe to continue to respect the suzerainty of White Zimbabweans and allow them to continue to have a strangle hold unto the land distribution in favor of the minority White population in 90 to 10 ratio with the majority Black Africans! Events coalesced to bring the US to their conspicuous support for Britain negative campaign against President Mugabe and Zimbabwe, America was desperate for Britain�s Blair�s continued support for the invasion of Iraq and the apportionment and misappropriation of Iraqi resources!
President Obasanjo of Nigeria and his counterpart of South Africa President Mbeki and Mr. Mbeki�s elder, President Mandela expressed openly and publicly their aversion to the American and British invasion and occupation of Iraq and also expressed their aversion to the pressuring and sanctioning of President Mugabe and Zimbabwe over the land redistribution imbroglio, the land fiasco arose from Britain and others neglecting to keep their parts of the pre-independence Zimbabwe brokered land re-distribution agreement!
America and Britain are tied mountain climbers in these policies of oppression of Iraq and Zimbabwe, America and Britain will climb or fall from the mountains together, this is clearly indicated in their vindictive post elections pronouncements in Nigeria! America and Britain through their undercover and subterranean agencies and organs, NDI, NRI, BBC, VOA have had the first opportunity to vent their joint bile against President Obasanjo for joining in the criticisms of America and Britain�s skullduggery and chicanery and wayward oppressive policies against Iraq and Zimbabwe!
And they have found a willing tool in the disgruntled Mohammadu Buhari who arrogantly believes that he has a birth right to be Nigeria�s democratic president, even though he does not possess a scintilla of democratic credentials or tenets needed to preserve democracy, the constitution and Nigeria as a single political entity!
Many have said that Mohammadu Buhari has no patience for any democratic process, others have said that he does not care about constitutional provisions, rights and freedoms, now, additionally, all Nigerians should be asking and answering more questions of Buhari, that is, does Buhari believe in Nigeria�s legal system? Does he believe in the tribunals and the courts established by the Federal Republic of Nigeria? Does Buhari believe in the continued existence of Nigeria as one nation? Otherwise, why is he and Don Etiebet making the inciting statements?
Is mass action not the same thing as riots and violence in present day local parlance in Nigeria? Why will a former head of state who is supposed to have some respectability and decorum or sense of national security interests, resort to incitements, threat of riots and thuggery?
I understand that "MASS ACTION" in local parlance, means violence or anarchy? Mr. Buhari or anyone who aspires to become a democratic president in Nigeria or anywhere should NOT advocate violence or anarchy!
This goes to prove a lack of respect for the constitution and a democratic process! It should be clear to everyone, that if you allege fraud? Then you must provide proof and evidence as you go to the courts or tribunal, not of mass actions, what is mass action?!
Why have an aversion to the duly constituted tribunals? Buhari absented himself from the Justice Oputa Panel Does he also plan to ignore the Election Tribunals or the Court System in Nigeria as a whole? And this same rules hater wants to be the president of my country?
Can anyone imagine what would have happened to someone as arrogant as him, but for democracy, laws and order and rules? He entered the race late, bulldozed all his forerunners for president on the ANPP ticket, ANPP did not campaign vigorously, ANPP was said to be cash strapped and bedeviled with infighting and all manners factions, ANPP had no significant spread and showing in most parts of the country and yet the ANPP expected to win? They did not! Instead of going back to the drawing board with some dignity intact, they are irresponsibly calling for bloodletting, anarchy and chaos? Nigerians and Nigeria must show these elements the redness of our collective eye!
The ANPP has had this bad strategy all along! They did no work, and they were set to blame their late start and poor campaign ant their resulting abysmal failures on others and rigging or whatever else, I alluded to this ANPP bad strategy in a previous article, where I compared President Obasanjo to his main challenger and compared their campaigns.
Buhari was the underdog of the race and he the audacity to skip debates with incumbent?
Buhari is at the verge imposing anarchy and violence and discord on Nigeria, if he succeeds, he would have become an incredible instrument and tool in the hands of America and Britain and others who resent Nigerian leadership that seeks to assert our country and clout on the world stage! Those countries that are envious and would do anything to cause the disintegration of Nigeria, in order to control the abundant of resources in Nigeria, the criticisms visited on the benign imperfection of the general elections results must be seen and analyzed from this perspective.
Mohammadu Buhari wants to turn Nigeria into another Ivory Coast? Liberia? Sierra Leone? The former Yugoslavia? Somalia? or Afghanistan? and the league of disintegrated republics? What exactly is Buhari thinking? Why is he making outrageous and outlandish utterances and pronouncements? What is he willing to do to become president by any means? It was through a coup in 1983; What are the shenanigans and warped intrigues that he has at work, on overdrive this time? Nigerians must watch Buhari very very very closely!
The Vice President of Nigeria Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has said it best, when �he decried the threat by the defeated presidential candidate of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), Major General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), as the ranting of an ant full of fury but without effect, asserting that the law enforcement agents would deal decisively with any politician who incites the public against the administration.
The vice-president further described Buhari as an apolitical person who was drafted into the presidential race without a clear focus and political foresight� �Buhari is not a politician and can never be a politician� BBC Hausa service of April 24, 2003 as reported on Daily Independence online edition of April 25, 2003
Mohamadu Buhari aspires to lead Nigeria, but he is willing to cause chaos and foist anarchy on the nation? He is willing to ignore all clear and present dangers posed by America, Britain and others who are seeking revenge against President Obasanjo and President Mbeki for their assertfulness! America and Britain are seeking to exact their primordial vindictiveness and Mohamadu Buhari is willing to a tool and an instrument to Nigeria�s enemies? Buhari wants to open the door for them against Nigeria! This is the man who would be president of Nigeria? No! Not now, and not ever!
All of the above lead me to ask questions regarding why Nigerians and Africans implicitly and explicitly trust America and Europe over our internal and external affairs? Why did we need the supervision and approval of these American and European election monitors in Nigeria or anywhere in Africa? Is it not clear to all now, that the pronouncements of these monitors are calculated and indicative of their evil machinations? Why do we believe that they are looking out for our best interests? They never have! History is my witness!
God and Allah have always blessed Nigeria and will continue to do so!
Paul I. Adujie is a Nigerian Lawyer and an Information Technology Professional