Game of Votes: The Nigeria Police Force Wants to Steal Your Heart

September 5, 2022

This is Zikoko Citizen’s Game of Votes weekly dispatch that helps you dig into all the good, bad, and extremely bizarre stuff happening in Nigeria and why they’re important to you.

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The public image of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) is as black as the uniform the officers wear. And when Nigerians protested with the call to #EndSARS in 2020, the police washed their very dirty underwear, overwear and all sorts of wears before the global community.

To gain a bit more control over the narrative, there are now many police spokespersons on Twitter directly attending to public complaints. But these spokespersons still do messy things like trying to act savage or victim-blame.

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The NPF is now trying to mend fences with Nigerians through the magic restorative power of improved public relations. This week, the Inspector-General, Usman Baba, announced plans to launch a Police PR School for officers. This school will focus on things like behaviour management, professionalism, and hopefully, the medicine that banishes the spirit of extortion and high-handedness.

That training can start with the Force spokesperson himself to prevent more tweets like this:

Game of Votes

Whatever the NPF is cooking here, improved engagement with Nigerians shouldn’t be about putting paper over cracks, but committing to true reforms that Nigerians can get behind. For starters, it would be nice for officers to stop extorting Nigerians. We don’t have anything for the boys.

What Else Happened This Week?

Nigerian Politicians Can’t Stay in One Place — It’s Science

One thing you can always trust a Nigerian politician to do is fornicate with party membership, especially around elections.

On August 29th, 2022, the presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, travelled down to Kano for a lavish celebration. The party held the ceremony in honour of a prodigal son that had just returned to its fold — Senator Ibrahim Shekarau.

Game of Votes

Shekarau left the PDP in 2018 when he joined the All Progressives Congress (APC). And there was similar fanfare when he dumped the APC for the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) three months ago in May 2022.

Shekarau proves the science that Nigerian politicians can’t be trusted to stick to one party, and you can always expect them to move in the thirst for power. Even the Atiku that went to welcome him in Kano has moved across parties four times since 2007. Well, he wants to be president, and the game is the game. 

Game of Votes

What this culture of repeated defection highlights is there are no ideological principles guiding Nigeria’s politics. No wonder the country is in the state that it is.

Have You Seen This Video?

Question of the Week

How many Nigerian political parties are participating in the 2023 general elections?

Click here to tweet your answer to @ZikokoCitizen on Twitter.

Ehen, one more thing…

Buhari publicly assured Nigerians he’ll allow them to vote for whoever they want in 2023, and we can only wonder, “What kind of democratic president allows democratic stuff to happen?” Such a weird guy.

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