Democracy requires the active participation of leaders and followers, but in Nigeria, the citizens have been said to be docile in demanding good governance, GBENRO ADEOYE writes
Democracy is known by many definitions but fundamentally, it is described as a system of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people who exercise it by electing representatives among themselves to govern them.
So a democracy is expected to be continually shaped and challenged by people who should constantly contribute, advocate, generate change and strive to be included, heard and represented equally.
According to an English writer, Alan Moore, “People shouldn’t be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people.”
It all looks good on paper, at least, better than the monarchical and military systems of administration that Nigeria had known in the past. However, even though, democracy has thrived in many advanced countries in the West and East, it has continued to struggle in Nigeria.
For instance, while the practice of democracy in advanced world continues to be uniquely shaped by people participating and challenging themselves and one another, in Nigeria, the people are considered as too docile to question their leaders and challenge them to be better.
It is a new year-2017- and according to experts, if Nigerians want the benefits of democracy, this is the time to start asking questions and demanding accountability from their leaders.
Some experts have however attributed the perceived docility by Nigerians to their history of monarchy and military dictatorship. In one, kings were highly revered and not to be questioned; in the other, too many questions could attract a gunshot to the head.