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31 Jan 2018

Speaker Dogara attacks APC, says own party unstable, lacking internal democracy

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, on Monday said his party, the All Progressives Congress and other political parties are weak, unstable, lacking functional party apparatus, while also suffering from low organizational capacity and internal democracy.
While delivering a keynote address at a retreat organized by the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, in Abuja, the nation’s number four man said political parties refusing to embrace reforms risk extinction.
The Minority Whip of the House, Yakubu Umar Barde, represented Mr. Dogara at the retreat with theme: ‘Dynamics of Managing Political Parties’.
He speaker said in attempts to either capture or hold on to power, some political parties sometimes embellished their manifestos with unrealistic promises which he said amounted to malpractice.
“It is a political malpractice for an elected government to govern without reference to the manifesto that was placed before the voters which essentially formed the basis of their election,” the speaker said.
The speaker stated that for political parties to effectively play central role in democratic representation, they must be managed and operated in such a manner as to establish trust in the electorate.
He lamented that most political parties in Africa, and Nigeria in particular, were weak, lacking not only stable and functioning party apparatus, but also clear programmatic appeal.
“They also suffer from low organisational capacity and lack of internal democracy. Such weak political parties cannot support democracy, as parties are expected to serve many important functions, including citizen mobilisation, interest aggregation, public policy formulation, leadership recruitment and government organisation,” he said.
He said the apparent weaknesses of political parties in Nigeria underlined the need for reform and professionalisation.
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