Political Thuggery and Democratic Dividends in Nigeria: An Empirical Study
The paper is an empirical study on political thuggery and democratic dividends in Nigeria. Utilizing secondary and primary data, the study tested four hypothetical assumptions. Analysis done through chi-square (x2) statistical test reveals that political thuggery hinders public accountability of elective officers thus a bane to good governance in Nigeria; increases crime rate thus a threat to the achievement of democratic dividends and exercise of citizenship rights in Nigeria. The study also reveals that the rising level of poverty, unemployment and weak security agencies account for the thriving market for political thuggery and violence in Nigeria. The more elective offices are made attractive financially the more politicians employ thugs during elections and campaigns. On the basis of these findings, the study recommends among others that government should make elective offices less attractive financially and conceited government programme and policies should be aimed at solving unemployment, poverty and strengthening the capacity of security agencies. Government must consistently educate the masses/youths on the evil of political thuggery and violence. Politicians should be made to sign undertaking that they would not employ thugs in their electioneering campaigns and that they will operate within the acceptable norms governing electoral process in Nigeria. Any politician who disobeys this should be severely punished and bound from participating in future elections.
Key words: Political thuggery; Financial attractiveness; Elective offices; Unemployment; Poverty; Security agencies; Democratic rights
Political thuggery; Financial attractiveness; Elective offices; Unemployment; Poverty; Security agencies; Democratic rights
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