Nigeria’s political marketplace may never remain the same again, as a coalition of social activists are determined to disrupt the norm by lending advocacy support to a tendering-based, performance-driven initiative – MOB – on which vote solicitation will henceforth be predicated, beginning with Nigeria’s 2023 general elections.
Lamprace is collaborating with Citizens Political Action Committee, C-PAC, and a host of civil society bodies in promoting the Minimum Offer Bond initiative, MOB, which aspires to execute an epic sensitization of Nigeria’s voting public and the political class, to bring into being a new voting culture which would predicate electoral success solely on the superiority of the developmental offer or service tender which a candidate presents to the voters.
Initiated by Lamprace, the MOB shall be executed as a Social Contract or Compact between the candidate and the voter, and extensively publicized, with a purpose to enabling voters make choices based on an evaluation of the competitiveness of the tenders which the candidates have propositioned their bids for political office.
The MOB – which is publicized as a Compact with Nigeria – will be drafted in a language and form to define, in bold print, the milestones and timelines of performance which the candidate proposes to achieve in selected critical areas of national, state or local transformation.
Under the MOB convention, the candidate will be required to xero-in on some irreducible-minimum targets of progressive change which he or she can guarantee delivery of within assigned timelines, out of the host promises which a politician is inclined to posturing before the voting public.
It is this ‘fit-to-size covenant’ to achieve the stated minimum within the stated timelines – be it in education, power supply, road construction, healthcare, security, etc. – as rendered in clear and unambiguous language, when executed as social contract with the people, that the MOB Watchtower shall publicize as “Performance Tender or Bond” submitted by the candidate and on the basis of which voters choices may be made.
The Bond would vest limitless liabilities on the candidate for any public opprobrium or civil unrest or demonstrations or riots which might occur, should he or she fail or ignore to vacate office in the event of not living up to his or her pledged progress milestones and delivery timelines.
MOB shall engage with every candidate in an election in Nigeria – President, Governor, Chairman of LGA, Senator, HOR Member, HOA Member – to commit to delivering a stated minimum of developmental progress in the key areas of the Nigerian challenge, as he or she volunteers to pursue or amplify.
Candidates who refuse or ignore to execute the MOB shall be consistently flagged before the voting audiences with the tag “Beware.”
While explaining during a press conference, the Publisher of Lamprace, Emeka Ike, said the Minimum Offer Bond is a systematic safeguard and a vital recourse for ensuring that democracy truly liberates transformation for Nigeria. He clarified that the over-arching objective is to enthrone a climate of ordered progress in Nigeria, through democracy, and ensure that the 4-year democratic circus, in the minimum, accomplishes the arduous task of liberating a just society and placing Nigeria under “Just Care.”
In the words of the Publisher of Lamprace, “The blurring of the policy lines in the democratic competition for power in Nigeria has choked the gap for a healthful contestation of development ideas, making it difficult to predicate electoral victory on the superiority of the ideas or policy agendae canvassed by competing parties and/or candidates.
“This defect continues to sustain a noticeable mismatch between the skills required for winning elections and the talents needed for governing. This mismatch is the essential difference between the glitzy shallowness, which pervades Nigeria’s political space, and the critical and sober thinking and informed judgements which produce economic growth and social transformation.
“It is towards filling this void of a ‘policy basis on which votes are canvassed and entrusted to candidates,’ that the Minimum Offer Bond – MOB – is conceived.
Mr. Ike continues: “Political leadership is of a higher calling than Business. It has greater power to impact, for better or worse, the fate or prospect of mankind, the fate or future of business, the fate of the professions, and the fate of knowledge and research.
It is indeed a huge irony that political leadership, especially in Africa, permits abysmally low thresholds (in capacity and character) of entry.”
He expressed confidence that the MOB convention will open up a new vista of credible, actionable and bankable agendae competing for the attention and adoption of the Nigerian voter. This, he reasons, will lift Nigeria’s politics to higher consciousness and higher levels of responsibility.
Further to the MOB, the Lamprace Publisher said that it will curate or provide guidance for “intentional communities” across Nigeria – stepping up from the ward level – with “Community Aspires for Regrowth and Development,” CARD-Term Compacts/ The idea, he stated, is to forge complementarity and fusion between agenda propositions of politicians and the aspirations of Nigerian communities.
In his contribution, Barrister Frank Tietie, human rights lawyer and convener of the Citizens Political Action Committee, C-PAC, emphasized that performance bonding is standard practice in the business domain, even where just a couple of millions is at stake. It is a basic recourse for a principal to ensure the delivery of service, when an agent or a service provider is engaged.
Barr. Tietie observed that Nigeria’s civil society groups face a daunting challenge in making more eligible voters in Nigeria participants in the electoral process, rather than mere spectators.
Barrister Tietie, who is the founder and executive director of Citizens’ Advocacy for Social and Economic Rights (CASER), warned that many Nigerians are losing confidence in the electoral process, stating that popularizing a tender-based system for vote solicitation can turn things around for the better.
In Tietie’s words: “Erecting systematic hurdles which leverage policy commitments as campaign deliverables, would lift the bar for electoral success and shut the ‘cockpit of power navigation’ to persons of subnormal intelligence and coarse moral density.
Barr. Tietie, who was recently elected as a member of the Steering Committee of the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), noted that the MOB convention would push forward exceptionally gifted Nigerians of great sensitivity, people of real purpose and passion, who would devote themselves unsparingly to the achievement of the mission to satisfy the beneficial use of Nigeria’s resources for Nigeria and Africa.”
With the MOB, votes would be cast on the basis of the service tender or deal presented by the candidate.