Prof. Mike Ozekhome (SAN), a human rights activist on Thursday described the 2023 Presidential Election Petition Court pronouncements in the petition filed by the Labour Party and its presidential candidate, Peter Obi, challenging the election of President Bola Tinubu as a ‘Judocracy’ against Nigerians.
Prof. Ozekhome stated this while delivering the 2023 and 22nd edition of the annual Bishop Mike Okonkwo lecture at the Shell Zenith Bank Hall, MUSON Centre, Onikan, Lagos tagged: “Nigerianisation Of Nigerians: A Look Inward”.
The Bishop Mike Okonkwo annual lecture forms part of activities to mark the birthday of the Presiding Bishop of The Redeemed Evangelical Mission (TREM).
The guest speaker who said the word ‘Judocracy’ was coined from his Neologism called ‘Ozekpedia’ lamented that politicians have deformed democracy in Nigeria where ‘Selectocracy’ of leaders has become the order of the day.
He described ‘Selectocracy’ as a ploy used by politicians to arm thugs who snatch ballot boxes to select leaders.
He decried the unchanging situation in Nigerian politics where people are encouraged to vote in elections, where their votes will not count and the votes are counted they do not count.
Ozekhome emphasised the need to cure the country of political drawbacks, saying Nigeria has continued to regress politically affecting the economy of the country.
The guest speaker described the term Nigerianisation as a deliberate policy by which governments take over the control and ownership of private enterprise due to economic, political, social and strategic reasons, saying it was designed to fight against discrimination and colonialism.
Regrettably, he said the reverse was the case in the country “Where nothing is ever fair, where anything is possible, and where you have to pay your way through life by offering and taking bribes to facilitate many of life’s processes.”
He lamented that the only way to survive in Nigeria, where there is so much distance between the government and the people in the form of widespread poverty, is incompetence in high places and established disregard for the rights of citizens.
Chairman of the occasion, Pat Utomi, a professor of political economy described democracy as practiced in Nigeria as lacking in character.
Utomi added, “The tragedy of Nigeria is that character is lost at all levels of government. “
He frowned at the degeneration in character among Nigerians, especially the political class, saying many users of the Twitter space should have their heads examined when contributing to national issues.
Bishop Okonkwo in his remark expressed disappointment in the attitude of the government and the governed, saying the tide of political backwardness in the country must be reversed for the good of the masses and the country.
Alexander Chibuzor of Archbishop Heerey Technical College, Ogidi, in Anambra State emerged as second in the 2023 Mike Okonkwo National Essay Competition.
The duo emerged winners from the 795 entries received for the 18th Bishop Mike Essay Competition for Secondary School students in Nigeria with the theme: “Nigerianisation of Nigerians: A Look Inward.”