The United States of America (US) has once again scored another first last Wednesday as the biggest and most enduring democracy under the planet earth when its citizens trooped out enmasse to elect their next President to run the affairs of governance in that God’s own country for another four years. The struggle was between Republican Donald Trump and Democratic Hillary Clinton which was later won by Trump.
Americans had one thing in their minds – patriotism – and ardent love for their country before casting their votes. The relevant issue concerning the election and what came out was the election of Donald Trump as President. Talking about the election vis-à-vis the type of democracy being practised in African countries – the acerbic type of democracy, democracy of the stomach structure, democracy of extra-judicial killings, of looting especially in Nigeria, one cannot do but give it to the Americans for electing their President witinh two or three days of rancour-free election.
The election was devoid of thuggery, ballot-snatching and tortuous resort to endless electoral litigations. Messages of congratulations began to pour in for Trump immediately after the election including our own President Muhammadu Buhari.
By any standard, the exercise could be termed inter primus pares or numero uno. Pundits have said that Americans voted in their president and not that of the world referring to Trump as their president and to Hillary Clinton as president of the world.
Back here in Nigeria, Nigerians believe Clinton will win given her gender inclination. Various expositions have been proffered before the election and by their electoral promises, Americans believe strongly in any candidate that would bolster their foreign policy worldwide, and boost the economy, none of which Hillary Clinton has any solution to.
The pattern of citizens’ vote is very instructive. They didn’t vote along parochialism or selfish interest. They had the whole country in their minds with a view to improving their economy and retain its status as the most powerful country in the world. What a vintage America.
The pertinent lesson to learn from US is for the African countries most especially Nigeria to change their mindset as to what type of democracy they want to practise. The sit-tight syndrome of African leaders not wanting to change guards is an anathema of African democracy. Many want to die in office rather than quit when the ovation is loudest and continue to impoverish the citizenry as long as it suits them.
Nigeria should learn from US’ experiment which conducts an election within three days and produced the winner in a record time. No inconclusive election and electoral malpractices that could resort to marathon legal fireworks in courts.
Nigerians have started being feverish with Donald Trump’s presidency saying the country’s citizens would be sent parking. The question they should ask themselves is what is it that Nigerians are doing in a foreign country for long, US inclusive for many years without any visible or lucrative vocation at hand. They should be thinking of returning home.
America has enough problems to contend with. Another lesson to learn from the dispensation is for followers to be much more patriotic, during the time of election, they should not vote on parochial interests. They should be able to take their destinies in their hands, which is what the Americans have always done during the elections to tread the path of good governance being currently provided by the US through rancour-free elections – no thuggery, ballot-snatching, no judicial killings.
The US had continued to improve on its electoral practices each time of election, the world – nay Nigerians – should follow suit for good governance to be entrenched in the country.
America is surely God’s own country. Hillary Clinton has congratulated Donald Trump calling on her party supporters to rally round him for the uplift of their country while promising to work with him if the need arises. Let’s take a cue from this woman and her country. It is a great lesson we should learn from in Nigeria nay the whole of Africa.
Nigerians, especially the political elite used to talk of home-grown democracy. This is a stratagem adopted to hoodwink gullible Nigerian electorate to sidetrack normal democratic norms and perpetuate electoral fraud and shenanigans in the polity.
America has nothing like home-grown democracy and they are always getting it right each time they go to the polls and have come out in flying colours because they have the will to do what is right at all times. Nigeria should put on its thinking cap to do the needful democratically at elections for good governance.