By Denrele Animashaun
“Look at the orators in our republics; as long as they are poor, both state and people can only praise their uprightness; but once they are fattened on the public funds, they conceive a hatred for justice, plan intrigues against the people and attack the democracy.”– Aristophanes
The Nigerian politician is indeed a unique breed, they break the mould hence it is unique breed. For field work analysis, I do believe they should be clearly labelled with a picture of before and after attaining the elevated position in the government and in any public domain.
Hindsight is a good thing, it would have helped to see what happens to them: they row fat, with rosy cheeks, expanding girth, and slow gait. We should consider not fattening this breed for their good. They grow so large physically and psychologically tha they become so deluded they rave in self-importance and grandiosity.
A word of caution to all those responsible for their unhealthy political appointment, they get worse, they make broken promises, in fact they never mean what they say, they do not know how, it is the pathology of their ailment .To woo the citizens they offer sound bites and may give away a day’s meal, a small bag of rice for your loyalty.
Really do not indulge them, it is really unhealthy for their wellbeing as any strip of conscience they have left, they trade for an ostentatious lifestyle. They are like a magpie gathering other peoples’ properties, wealth and quality of life. They grow grotesquely huge on their greed and on other peoples’ misery while they play first families and lord of the manor. With their over inflated egos, they develop a contagious bad taste for gaucheness.
Their transformation is only ever complete when they rewrite their past; no, they were never poor, in fact they had this much wealth prior to taking office. They often protest and swear that they have always being civic minded, they took office solely to serve the people and not the other way round.
I really do apologise for those good politicians who are doing their utmost best to change this image, but the 90% of the politicians are giving the 10% good politicians a bad name.
Hilary Clinton famously said that the difference between a politician and a statesman man is ; “the politician thinks only in terms of one election but the statesman, a generation”..
For the sake of the health of our politicians do not feed them. If they cannot perform they should not be rewarded after all they are working. Stop indulging them and do give them access to the money jar. We all do them a favour if we refuse to give away our civic rights and not vote them in.
That is excessive pay.
“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”— Franklin D. Roosevelt
In Kenya, President Kibaki has got a fight on his hands as the country’s lawmakers awarded themselves an inflated retirement package they called a ” send-off” package. So, why is this news worthy? This move is a change from what we expect from our sub Saharan lawmakers.
Mr Kabaki,an 82 year old seasoned politician has nothing to prove as this is his last time in office; he was a former teacher and son of a peasant. As you know, someone once claimed to be shoeless and poor to ram home the fact that he is one of “us”.
I digress, the move was a last ditch attempt to curb the parliamentarians of an audacious abuse of office and their wanton greed to hold on to the last vestiges of power. I mean, not like they asked for heaven and earth, did they? Well, they asked for a lot this included a diplomatic passport, access to VIP lounge in any Kenyan airport and, for good measure, they want a police guard and for a right final send off, they requested a state funeral!
They did not forget the president, nor the vice president and the prime minister did they sign them up for similar package. The Kenyan’s salaries and remuneration Commission said it was unconstitutional for legislators to set their own pay under the constitution the country adopted in 2010.
The Salaries Commission, through its chair, Sarah Serem has expressed its opposition to both Bills. The Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya chairman, Patrick Mtange, said the commission should be strengthened to enable it insulate tax payers from MPs excesses. Excesses? Yes, it is declared that it was highly inappropriate for the lawmakers to award itself so much.Of course they have not compared notes with their Nigerian counterparts.