While the All Progressives Congress-led federal government has made the anti-corruption war a priority, the conduct of the party’s members in Ondo shows a lot still needs to be done to sensitise Nigerians on the malaise.
The way money was shared by aspirants and their agents to the hundreds of delegates at the venue of the congress, a common scenario in Nigerian polity, arguably demonstrates the endemic corruption in the nation’s political system.
One of the 24 governorship aspirants of the party, Tunji Ariyomo, believes corruption is systemic and not necessarily the character of the average Nigerian.
Mr. Ariyomo said the buying of votes in the Nigerian political system will continue regardless of which political party is in power. He said the corruption will continue as long as the present electoral system, where delegates and not the people choose their representatives, continues.
He argued that the only way President Muhammadu Buhari can build on the electoral reforms of the past administration is to abolish the delegates system and adopt the open system of primaries where citizens can have the opportunity to choose their candidates.
Mr. Ariyomo lamented the situation where the delegates were virtually camped away by some contenders making it difficult for other competitors to woo them legitimately.
“The primary election here appears transparent as you can see, but the process needs to be changed so that the people can decide, rather than use the delegates system,” he said.
According to him, he did not spend any money on any delegate as that would contradict his belief on an equitable process.