IN 1968, Marshall McLuhan had pictured the world as a global village on account of its peoples being closely linked through the technology of modern telecommunications as well as being economically, socially, and politically interdependent. Today, with the internet and social media, the world has shrunk more than ever envisaged, and the reality of globalisation can no longer be ignored.
No country is an island anymore. The world has even come to realise, since Adolf Hitler, that the idea of state sovereignty and non-interference in the affairs of a sovereign nation, have gross limitations.
From Hitler’s Germany to Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, Syria, Cote D’Ivoire and now Venezuela, the conscientious international community has proved that it can no longer afford to fold its arms and watch dictators emasculate their own people in the name of sovereignty. The world has also realised, with the global nature of certain socio-political, economic, environmental and security issues such as terrorism, migration and environmental cataclysms, that what affects one corner of the global village can easily spill over to other parts.
It is in this light that the timely warnings issued to Nigerian politicians by the United States, UK, EU and other countries concerning the possible rigging of the 2019 general elections and promotion of violence can be viewed. The British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Ms Catriona Laing, had on Wednesday, February 13, 2019, warned that politicians who incite or carry out violence during these elections will be banned from visa issuance and have their assets in UK confiscated.
Before this, the US, the EU and other countries had also issued similar warnings which some political actors took in bad faith and began to issue grim threats to invited foreign election observers who “interfere” in our internal affairs.
We again condemn such unguarded and uncivilised outbursts against the international community, though we agree that our august visitors should strictly abide by the rules of international polls monitoring and their primary duties as envoys.
Nigeria had in the past tasted the bitter pill of being a pariah nation which it had found very unsavoury, and would not like a repeat of that experience.
Nigeria cannot afford to again find herself on the verge of entering EU blacklist of countries whose money laundering activities feed terrorism.
We need all the help we can get from our friends after elections in facing up squarely to the core issues of governance, such as ending the Boko Haram war and other security threats, repairing our shattered and stagnant economy, restoring our grievously-battered sense of nationhood and regaining our pace of rapid development.
We once again call on the political forces and the electorate to join hands with the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to ensure that we surpass our democratic credentials of 2015.
Go out en masse and vote.