By Myke Uzendu, Abuja
As the nation commemorates 21 years of uninterrupted democracy, Young Peoples Party (YPP) has lamented that those who frustrated or mocked the struggle for democracy and now its greatest beneficiaries.
The party maintained that unless Nigerians brace up and take owner of the democratic process, dividends of democracy will continue to elude the citizens.
The party made known its position in a democracy day statement on Friday issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Comrade Egbeola Wale Martins.
According to the party, the hijack of the democratic process has resulted in further impoverishment of the citizens. The party lamented that the emergence of the country as the poverty capital of the world is a pointer to the fact the misrule and lack of leadership from people that have no regard for democracy has remained the bane of the country.
“One of the greatest highlights of the past 21 years in our current democratic journey is the recognition of June 12 as democracy day. The day not only epitomizes our collective ability as a people to rise above primordial sentiments but also the capacity to unite towards a common struggle if our collective will becomes threatened.
“Ironically, the beneficiaries of this collective struggle in the same period under review have not been the Nigerian people but those who either mocked or antagonized the struggle. No wonder our current democratic experiment has resulted in further impoverishment rather than improvement in the quality of life of Nigerians. The sad reminder of being the poverty capital of the world is a summation of cumulative visionless leadership of same number of years these accidental beneficiaries of our painful struggle.
“The operators of our democracy rather than democracy itself have been the reason for our socio-economic and political stagnation and until there is a better alternative, it is incumbent on us all as citizens to not only protect our democracy but also aggressively demand for the delivery of dividends that comes with it. The gains of democracy will continue to remain elusive except we as citizens galvanize ourselves through political participation and take ownership of our democracy” the party stated.
The party stressed that “the practice of democracy is no guarantee for development except citizens are ready to take ownership by constantly supporting visionary leadership and simultaneously demanding transparency and accountability from same”.
YPP called on the nations leadership to take a step further by embarking on a radical electoral reform and complete restructuring of the country, adding that anything aside the aforementioned will continue to make the gains of democracy elusive.