ASSESMENT OF ELECTIONEERING PROCESS AND DEMOCRATIC GROWTH IN EKITI STATE. (1999-2014)

ASSESSMENT OF ELECTIONEERING PROCESS AND DEMOCRATIC GROWTH IN EKITI STATE. (1999-2014)
 
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title page                                                                                        
Certification                                                                                             
Dedication                                                                                        
Acknowledgment                                                                             
Table of Content                                                                              
Abstract
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1           
Background to the study
                                                                           
1.2           
Statement of the
problem                                                                 
1.3           
Research questions                                                                                    
1.4           
Objectives of the study                                                                   
1.5           
Research Hypothesis                                                                      
1.6           
Research methodology                                                                     
1.7           
Significance of study                                                                        
1.8           
Limitation of study                                                                         
1.9           
Scope of the study                                                                                     
1.10      
Theoretical framework                                                                     
1.11      
Definition of key terms                                                                     
1.12      
Organization of the study
                                                               
References
CHAPTER THREE: OVERVIEW OF GOVERNORSHIP ELECTIONS IN EKITI
 3.1    Introduction                                                                                                
3.2     The
Study Area                                                                                
3.3     The
Governorship Election Tussles in Ekiti State                                     
          References
                             
CHAPTER FOUR: DATA PRESENTATION, INTERPRETATION AND ANALYSIS
4.1     Introduction                                                                                               
4.2     Analysis
of Demographic Characteristics of the Respondents                  
4.3     Respondent’s
Responses on the opinion of Electioneering process and Democratic Growth in
Ekiti State from 1999-2014                                             73
4.4     Respondents’
Responses on the Assessment of Electioneering process and Democratic Growth in
Ekiti State from 1999-2014                                             77
4.4.1  Democratic
practice and people’s Empowerment in Electing Representatives                                                                                                                        77
4.4.2  The  Political Elite and their contribution to
Political Crisis in a Democratic Setting                                                                                                    79
4.4.3  Electoral
Malpractices and it’s Effect on Democratic Growth          81
4.4.4  Democratic
Governments and their contribution to Democratic Growth                                                                                                                      83
4.4.5  Electioneering
process and Democratic Growth                               84
4.4.6  Effects
of Electoral Malpractices on Democratic Government                   86
4.4.7  The
military and the conducts of free and fair election                     87
CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, RECOMMENDATIONS AND CONCLUSION
5.1     Summary                                                                                           91
5.2     Recommendations                                                                                       93
5.2.1  Development
of a viable and objective political culture and Socialization                                                                                                                    93
5.2.2  Termination
of money politics, thuggery and godfatherism in Electioneering
Process                                                                                              94
5.2.3  Reduction
of corruption and profligacy in the state political circle   94
5.2.4  Commitment
to state integration and political stability                    95
5.3     Conclusion                                                                                        97
          Bibliography                                                                                    
          Appendix

ABSTRACT

Unarguably, the basic pillar of
democracy all over the world is regular free and fair elections as the basis
upon which power is assumed. The form of governance called democracy which is
being regarded as a beacon of light and the beginning of good things of life.
This has called for the consistent clamor for the enthronement of democracy
worldwide. However, the conduct of elections and resultant violence in Ekiti
state is of concern to the political literary world. Using primary and
secondary method of data collection and descriptive method of analysis as
research methodology, the study undertakes research into trends and causes of
electoral violence and low level of democratic growth in Ekiti state. The study
focus on the genealogy of governorship elections in the state, the decisive
competitiveness for this position especially among the political elites in the
state, the marred election and the resultant political violence being witness
in the state. This study shall also make feasible recommendation on the way
out.    
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CHAPTER ONE
1.1           
Background to the Study
No doubt, election and electioneering
processes are core components of democratic government. Hence, democracy is
often associated with elections.
The concept of democracy is a
nebulous concept. Its ambiguity is largely as a result of varying definitions
and interpretations from scholars and political discussants alike. Taken
together, these deferring interpretations have produced profound disagreements,
some of which can be traced to the permanent tension between democracy as an
ideal, on the one hand, and as a set of actual public institutions on the
others.
For instance, the Black’s Law
Dictionary, defines democracy as “the form of government in which the
sovereignty power resides in and is exercised by the whole body of free citizen
directly through a system of representation as distinguished from a monarchy,
aristocracy or oligarchy”. The Chambers Dictionary views the concept as “a form
of government in which supreme power is vested in the people collectively and
administered by them or by officials appointed by them; the common people; a
state of society characterize by recognition of the equality of rights and
privileges for all people, political, social or legal equality”.
Abraham Lincoln, a onetime president
of the United State of America, in a simplistic manner, defined democracy as
“the government of the people, by the people and for the people”. (Lincoln
A.1809-1865). Akintola (2010) associates democracy with civilian government
based on the practice of struggle between political parties for the capture of
the instruments of political power within a nation state. Nevertheless, in
spite of this apparent disagreement and contestation among scholars, there are
certain basic features of democracy which serves as a benchmark to ascertain
which government is democratic and vice versa. Some of these features include:
Ø the conduct of elections,
representative form of governance and freedom of choice;
Ø respect for the rule of law and
equality before the law;
Ø accountability;
Ø An independent judiciary. Others are
the
Ø decentralization or delegation of
power and;
Ø Authority between all tiers of
government among others. (Miedder 1999:112).
The conduct of elections,
representative form of government through participatory process vis – a – vis
freedom of choice is a major backbone of democracy and it can only be assured
under a true democratic dispensation. The extent to which a given polity
guarantee or protects the right definitely indicates the level or degree of
it’s commitment to the principles of democracy. In other words, there is a
fundamental link between the conduct of elections and democracy. The conduct of
election can only be considerable guaranteed in a democratic setting, while the
struggle for the protection of the citizenry right to elect those that are to
represents them in a government form the basis for the establishment of an
enduring democratic culture.
     Thus, the thrust of this study is to examine various
electioneering process that have taken place in Ekiti State from 1998-2014 and
see how it promote or retard democratic governance. This is with the view to
ascertain the reasons why the state had many elections conducted than any state
in the country during the period under review.
1.2     Statement of Research
Problems
          Interestingly,
the general outcome of election is dependent and mainly determined by the
conduct and management of the electoral processes. Thus, election is more often
than not, more of a process and procedures that simply events. To this extent,
the process that guarantees democracy in as much important as election that
births it.
          This
implies that the credibility of elections and fairness of electoral process is
an essential element in deepening Nigeria’s nascent democratic project, and
particularly, democratic governance in Ekiti state. (Akingbade, 2011:265).
          Literature
is replete on the electioneering process and democratic growth in Nigeria. For
example, Ekeh (1989:116) posits that, Nigeria has been faced with the
challenges of free and fair election right from the elective principle
introduced by the 1922 Clifford constitution that paved way for the first
election held in 1923 up to the independence election held in 1959. The
elections held after independence were in no way better off, as they have been
dominated by violence emanating from electoral malpractices and all forms of
vices that eventually led to the collapse of the previous republics. Egbewole
(2006) juxtapose furthers that the present democratic dispensation in Nigeria
have not failed to throw up its own challenges as issues such as ballot
snatching, under age voting, electoral violence, rigging and a host of
electoral malpractices which has turned the winning of election into a “do or
die affair”. However, none of these studies substantially investigate the
chosen topic in Ekiti state during the period under review. While the study
does not claim exhaustive examination of the issue, it among others, will fill
the identified gaps.
1.3 Research Questions
The following research questions will
be answered by this study.
(i)               
Is
electioneering process in Ekiti state up to global standard?
(ii)            
To
what extent does democratic practice in Ekiti state abides with international
standard?
(iii)          
To
what extent is electioneering process engendering democratic growth in Ekiti
state?
(iv)          
Can
a viable and transparent electoral process promote democratic growth and
consolidation in Ekiti state?
(v)            
Is
there any form of correlation between educated electorate and political
instability has been witness in Ekiti state?
(vi)          
How?
If any, Can electoral malpractices affects development in a democratic setting
like Ekiti state?
1.4     Objectives of the Study
          The general objective of this study
is to assess electioneering process and the growth of democracy in Ekiti State
from 1998-2014. However, the specific objectives of the study are to;
a.      assess the growth rate of electioneering
process in Ekiti state, vis-à-vis its  impact
on democratic growth in Ekiti state;
b.     discuss the viability and
transparency of electoral process in Ekiti state electoral process;
c.      ensure how a viable and transparent
electoral process promote democratic growth and consolidation in Ekiti state;
d.     study the correlation between
educated electorate and political instability in Ekiti state; and
e.      proffer recommendations on how the
succession crisis into leadership position especially the governorship post can
be minimized in Ekiti state.  
1.5     Research Hypothesis    
 The following research hypothesis will guide
this study.
    
i.                       
Transparent
electoral process promotes democratic growth and consolidation in Ekiti state.
 
ii.                       
Absence
of clear –cut ideologies among the existing political parties in Nigeria is
recipe for fraudulent electioneering process and democratic retardation.
iii.                       
There
is a direct correlation between educated electorate and political instability
as witnessed in Ekiti State
1.6           
Research Methodology
The study will adopt a critical and
evaluative approach to assess the electioneering process and democratic growth
in Ekiti state. The dominant method applied to this research work is on the use
of documented materials collected from internet sources, libraries of study,
journals and Nigeria newspapers, etc. also, INEC database would also be of
importance. The source of data will be the combination of both primary and
secondary data and the method of content analysis will be used.  
1.7     Significance of Study
          This
study is relevant on several grounds. Firstly, it is relatively new compare to
previous research on the choose topic. Secondly, it would contribute
immensely  to the existing body of knowledge
in the discipline and particularly on the role of electioneering process in
deepening democratic practice in Ekiti State from 1999 – 2014. Thirdly, this
study would also be a useful tool and a reference material to political science
student’s who might be interested in conducting research on election in the
nearest future. Lastly, it will fill the identified gaps.                                           
1.8     Limitation of the Study
The following challenges confronts
the researcher in the field and posses a lot of limitation to the study.
i.                  
The
targeted respondent especially the civil servants are not willing to respond to
the questionnaire due to the fear of losing their jobs and this posse a
limitation to the study.
ii.                
The
respondent has lost interest in the democratic settings, due to the failure of
consequent government in fulfilling their electoral promises to the electorate
thereby discouraging them from responding to the questionnaire.
iii.             
The
unavailability of the different political elites in the state for interview
also posses challenge to this research project.
iv.             
The
present political crisis in the state hinders the researcher from getting to
some part of the state to administer questioner, thereby limiting the results
of this research.
1.9           
Scope of the Study
This study will be conducted on the
basis of the advent of democratic dispensation in Ekiti State. This study will
focus more on the various gubernatorial election that took place in the State from
1999 – 2014. The study will as a matter of necessity consider some cogent
electoral process, starting from the various primary elections in the two
strongest political parties, political campaign by the gubernatorial aspirants,
political culture and socialization of the Ekiti people and the voting system
in correlation with democratic growth in Ekiti State.
1.10      
Theoretical Framework        
          In
this research work, the theoretical framework of the study will be base within
the context of democratic theorists, particularly the writings of Jean Jacque
Rousseau in his (1910) works, John Stuart Mills amongst other scholars.
Schumpeter (1945) opined that, over
the years, five distinct phases have been identified as progressive, undeniable
and unavoidable stages which democracy traverses. He further affirms that no
nation has jumped over or avoided any or some of the phases:
(i)               
Nominal
Democracy
(ii)            
Ritualized
Voters’ Democracy
(iii)          
Transformative
Economic Democracy
(iv)          
Constitutional
Democracy
(v)            
Liberal
Democracy    Schumpeter(1945)
However, for the sake of
this study, it is pertinent to fully grasp the essential differences in the
various phases and stages because of the inherent interpretative
responsibilities which fall on the shoulders of professional politicians,
political analyst, lawmakers and power elites of different nations (Claver,
2009) 
The first stage refers to
democracy in its infancy. The practice is more nominal than real in that what
is celebrated is essentially the transfer of power from one hegemonic block to
a new one. At this stage, democracy was more by name than by practice and the
general happiness of people had more to do with the departure of the military
than with a novel practice of democracy.
The second stage is often
referred to as ritualized democracy when
voters go through the obligatory ritual of registration, listening to campaigns
of candidates, actual voting, swearing in of elected persons and celebrations
of popular successful choices. J.J Rousseau postulate that, in some countries,
this second stage of voters’ democracy could go on for decades. The only time
when you see a semblance of democracy in action is during the often flawed
process of electioneering and voting. As soon as the moment of voting is over,
democracy also abates, waiting for the next four years for a repeat of the
“democratic ritual”
Schumpeter (1945)
describes the third stage as transformative economic democracy; it usually describes the period of public concern for economic growth
and the transformation of the society. J.S mills, opine that even the
despicable politicians at this stage, become obsess with the need to give
financial and material returns to the investment of the people. This is the
stage for the pursuit of what we glibly call the dividends of democracy, in
Nigeria. And truly, democracy is the investment of the people while economic
growth should be seen as the returns on such investment. At this stage,
democracy is usually more pre-occupied with linkages to the international
capitalist system and the development of intra national structures to promote
and support the envisage economic transformation of the society. G D H Cole
(1968)
The fourth stage
according to Schumpeter democratic theory is the phase of testing the limits
and elasticity of the democratic provision
as enshrined in the statute and the all-important constitution (Birai,
2007). Naturally, the general level of awareness is high enough for both
institutions and person to pursue individual right and collective liberty.
Damlong (2009) refer to this phase as the trial of the judiciary in democracy;
and the gains which are won are also regarded as the contributions of
jurisprudence to democratic growth. This phase entails the use of legal
frameworks to determine right, obligations and justice able provisions of the
constitution.
The highest stage of
democracy, as of today, is what we call liberal democracy. This stage is
characterized by the high empowerment of the civil society and high visibility
of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). At this stage, governmental attention
and observance of human rights are not cosmetic but sincere and real. Citizens’
rights are protected within and outside the boundaries of state while the
protective arms of the state follows the citizens everywhere he/she goes.
It is however believed,
according to the theorists that the third world (and indeed. Nigeria in this
case) are still in there nominal stage of democracy, that is, (the origin of
democracy) which represents stage one of democracy. Thus, the stage of liberal
democracy is seen as the ideal situation whereby the nominal democratic system
would have been totally transformed into the liberal democracy.
With this analysis in
view, it sounds rather paradoxical that despite Nigeria’s fifty four years of
political independence, the country can still be categorized with the nominal stage
of democracy. This notion of under development also affects all ramification of
Ekiti State, as one of the 36 states that constitutes the federal republic of
Nigeria.
The electioneering
processes that supposed to be a panacea to a true democracy have been marred by
electoral irregularities, money politics and godfatherism. Thereby, producing
bad leaders that pursue their selfish interest even at the detriment of the
populace, this makes a lot of people to wonder if democracy is truly practice
in Ekiti State.
1.11      
Definition of Key Terms
In this study the following terms
would be examined as intended to be used here. These include;
 Politics: The definition of politics in social
science is broadly contested. Mclean and McMillan (2002). Politics is traditionally
the art and science of government. How leaders are chosen to lead government
varies from one country to the other.
          However,
the most preferred type of government is the one in which citizens are given
the opportunity to either select or elect their own leaders. A government in
which people have the opportunity to choose their own leaders is called
Democracy. Dahl as cited in Mutfwang (2007) listed the features of democracy to
include but not limited to peaceful election and removal of leaders.
  
      Since, 1999, Nigeria has been practicing
democracy or civil rule. For the first in the history of the nation, the
country has had fifteen years of uninterrupted civilian regime. Looking at the
previous history of Nigeria, this is a big achievement.
          With
continuous democratic rule, a unique culture of democracy is gradually emerging
in Nigeria. Contemporary Nigerian democracy in the opinion of Mutifwang          (2007) has many negative features.
These features include ballot box snatching, ballot box stuffing and the
throwing of ballot boxes into rivers, buying of peoples vote through money and
other crook means. While in other parts of the world, politics is about
development, in Nigeria, politics is reduced to a struggle for survival by
politicians. This is what Mutfwang (2007) referred to as amala politics.
          However,
for the sake of this study, politics entails all public affairs or the
government of a country or concerned with politics.
Election: election
in this study means a vote to select the winner of a position or political
office.
Party: Party
in this study encompasses a group of people doing something together. In this context however, it is an association
of people having the same political aims, especially as a means to try to win
elections.
System: For
the sake of this study, system refers to a set of elements or components, which
is distinguished from its environment. Firstly, by a marked higher degree of
interdependence of co–variance. A system is further characterized by markedly
large flow of transactions coherence, in the sense or lower probability and
higher cost of separation components.
Political Party: As defined by Austin Ranney and W. Kendal, political party is an
autonomous organized group of people that make nomination and contest election
in the hope of eventually gaining and exercising control of personnel and
policies of government. In this study, political party will refers to the
agglomeration of people coming together to pursue the same goals of winning
state power through electioneering process.
          Similarly,
political participation is the extent of the people’s involvement in political
matters.
Political Awareness: Political awareness is the consciousness of evaluating the political
system while political behavior proceeds from assumption that politics as a
special form of human activity is not and cannot be independent of what is
known or knowable about social behavior generally,
          All
these terms will be used synonymously and interchangeably in this research
work.
1.12      
Organization of the Study
          This
study is divided into five chapters. While Chapter one entails the background
to the study, statements of the research problems, research questions
objectives of the study, research hypothesis, research methodology,
significance of the study, limitation of the study, scope of the study,
theoretical framework and definition of key term, chapter two deals with the
review of relevant literatures, on elections, electoral process and democracy
in Nigeria as whole and Ekiti state in particular.  Chapter three will give a historical
background of electoral process and is impact on democratic growth in Ekiti
State while chapter four will include the assessment of electioneering process
and democratic growth in Ekiti state from 1999-2014. Chapter five is the
concluding chapter, which includes the summary, recommendations and conclusion.



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Ake,
C. 2000. The Feasibility of Democracy in Africa. Dakar: CODESRIA
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Akingbade,B.O.
(2011) “Political parties and instability in Ekiti State in the Fourth           Republic” African Journal of Political
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5 (5), PP. 262 – 270, may 2011.
Almond, G.A and Verba, S. (1965), the Civic
Culture, Little Brown and CO,    Boston.
Awolowo,O (1966); thoughts on
Nigerian constitution: Oxford University Press,       England.
Biden, Paul (2007). Democracy In Motion. New York: Simon
and Schuster.
Black, C. E. (2000). The Dynamics of Modernization. Princeton:
Princeton         University Press.
Blanton, L. and Kegley, C. (2010). Global
Politics: Trend and Transformation
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          Boston:
Cengage Learning.
Conteh-Morgan,
E. 1997. Democratization in Africa : the theory and dynamics of political
transition. Westport,CT: Praeger.
Mackenzie,W.J.M
(1987) “free elections,” George Allen and Union, London.
Mclean
and Mcmillan (2003). Oxford Concise Dictionary of Politics PP 422 – 423.
Mutfwang,P.M.
(2002) “ Election and Democratization: Emerging trends in African”. Nigeria
Journal of Political Science, Volume 11, No 1 PP 128 – 142
Schumpeter, P, The
Theory of Democratic Elitism; Little Brown and Co, Boston.
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