Review of Related Literature
In this chapter the researcher reviewed existing related literature on the subject matter.
To that effect the work focused on literature related to Christian participation in politics, with the aim of discovering what people have already written on the issue. To help the researcher to go into what politics is origin of Christian political participation in politics, the process and means of acquiring political power, the researcher shall also review the purpose and reasons for playing politics by Christians.
The nature of politics then and our own brand of politics here in Africa, Nigeria, Ebonyi State in general and Ishielu Local Government in Particular.
Furthermore, the work shall consider the various ways of acquiring power and the possibility of effective Christian's participation in politics. The work shall streamline the merits and demerits of Christians participation effectively in politics.
The review followed the pattern of looking at what other have previously written in related literature whether agreeing or disagreeing on the view of the writers as the case may be.
2.2 The Concept of Government
It is extremely difficult to write, research or review related literature concerning Christian participation effectively in politics without touching such areas as the concept of politics, party politics, democracy, elections, democracy, to mention but a few. Government said Herman Finner is politics and administration that means if you want to be in charge -in government, you must to acquire power to administer.
2.3 The Concept of Politics
In the words of Ibezim (1999), politics is struggle for a; it involves struggle, ever the higher stakes the authority to and carry out polices that are bounding on the entire society.
In view of the magnitude of the stakes in the game of politics, many of our adult citizens for one reason or the other fail to participate effectively in politics. The truth is that whether you participate or not, you are unavoidably involved in politics either omission or commission, either by action or inaction, is either are a participant in the political science or you are a spectator, there are no other ways about it. What we practice is democratic government for get about whether election was rigged no matter how good or bad the conduct of the election.
In the words of Ibezim (1985), democracy requires that the apathetic Minority (whether they like it or not) will be governed by politics. They have no direct part in shaping. These are the majority.
Since man is a political animal and either by our actions or inactions we are involved in politics, it is necessary for us to address our minds as Christians towards effective participation in politics, since non-participation cannot change the status.
2.4 The Concept of Power
Still on Ibezim (1999) power is central concern of all politics, national or international, power is not something that can be grasped in a physical sense.
Power is not tangible thing, rather it is a relationship. A relationship of power exists, if there is ever one individual or group are subordinated to another with respect to some form of activity.
A person is said to be in power or enjoy power whenever he can influence the behaviors of other to conform to his own wish or intentions.
Noted further that power is immanent in any political community no matter its level of political development. Political of psychological relation between those who exercise it those over who it is exercised.
Ake (1983) noted that politics in Nigeria is a do or die because politics is seen as the easiest means of primitive capital accumulation. The rules are subverted and the winner all there in the political system. The above assertion has made people work on Christian in politics as involved in sheep clothing. It has made people feel that a true Christian should not participate in politics talk less of participating effectively but the gospel truth is that whether we participate or are not of the political system either as actors or spectators and we are guided by the politics of those in power, hence the need for Christians to be involved in politics effectively.
On his own, Akpata (1994) noted a lot has been said about mass participation and the researcher proposal will be an attempt of aggregate various interests the type or represented action one has in mind is one that has some kind of social conscience. The above statement, participation in politics needs human face and Asocial conscience, it is on this premise that call for, and support effective Christian's participation in the political process.
Contributing Onyemekeya (1996) stated that most of the politicians (77-87%) were unqualified and inexperienced. Consequently they lack the necessary acumen to understand the important issue involved in politics.
The fact that a lot of Christian are qualified, plus their true Christians features call for their participation in politics. Christian needs to participate effectively to change the face of our body politics.
Nzeogwu (1996) while announcing the dissolution of the first republic noted that the enemies of Nigeria were the political profiteers, swindlers, those that seek to keep the country permanently divided so that they can remain in office. Since that is the case, Christians as matter of urgency need to participate effectively in politics all things being equal. Various view have been put forward for the collapse of the republic.
Nnoh (1993) noted ethnicity has been used differently by politicians to fan the member of disunity in the country. Politicians whip up ethnic sentiments in their bid to enhance their bargaining position among rural areas. The level of ethnic politics is one aspect that affect, effective participation of Christians in besides corruption, corruption is a canker worm has whatever that is charitable in our -body politics and the is that corruption has made many honest and God fearing Christians shun politics and all it stands for.
A forcy into the political history of Nigeria shows that the try is indeed centrifugation of many interests. The number of ic nationalities is more than two hundred (200).
Nwanuri (1997) opined that the solution to the intricate problem of Nigeria base its enthronement of good leadership required to direct the affairs of others.
It is the believe of the researchers that Christians participating in effective politics can go a long way in producing desired good leadership the country its demurring for, all the though the odds against such effective participation in mammoth. .can a true Christian effective embark an effective political participation while corruption is the bane, of Nigeria politics? Ishiulu Local Government Area inclusive.
Achebe (2000) identify corruption as the bane of country decay when he noted that the entire structure and institution in Nigeria smeeks of corruption. The situation has ended trust amongst the federating units and enthroned mediocrity in our national psyche.
The saying that if you can't beat them, join them readily f comes to mind, what is the guarantee that Christians participating effectively in politics will not join the corrupt wagon. The truth being that corruption militate against effective participation in polities by true Christians.
Deleh (1997) has this to say, Nigeria is a country where politicians are prepared to correct any atrocity to ensure that they remain in power.
Considering this statement for a Reverend father one is forced to conduce that effective Christian participation Nigeria in general Ishiulu in particular look like an up hill trust. To buttress, the above fact the Christian of the presidential campaign of P.D.P in 2003 was quoted as saying that if they did not lose the election 1999 when it was conducted by the military, it was certain that they could not lose, now that they were going to conduct it by themselves. A peep at the above statement points out why it is •difficult for Christians to participate effectively in Nigeria politics since to a large extend who gets what, why and now has already been determined well before the election, how can a Christian participate effectively since rigging is now a system of acceptable Selection in Nigeria.
O. Eleh (1997) noted things have gone away in this country, many Nigerians possibly all of us, have contributed in one way or other in making things bad, some do so through active participation.
He noted further, they believe that whenever you cannot some do it through negligence of duty or sheer apathy. They do want to get involved. Some do it through ignorance. Looking critically at O. Deh assertion our problem is a collective guilt either by omission or commission willingly or unwillingly. At times Christians are guilty of participating or joining them since they can't beat them as times they are guilty of aloofness not participating one can pity the situation a Christian as far as t effective participation in politics is concerned.
He went further to stress they are the gullible masses. That Shave believe and act on what ever they are told by their unquestionable masters. Some do it through fear; they do not I want to die. Politics, the way it is played in Africa, Nigeria, Ebonyi state and Ishiulu Local Government Area in particular to say the least is dirt, the dirtiness is one of the factors militating effective Christian participation in politics.
A further review of the book O Deh the madness called election stated that leadership in Nigeria has become a huge investment and a life insurance scheme when one has to engage in many. A normal thing to be secure in preparing He stated further.
No Nigerian who has tested the trapping of office has left it willingly without force or often violent pressure while those who as pair to be there spare nobody and nothing on their way.
From the above, this comments from the Reverend gentleman once can see that in the Nigeria context effective Christians participation in politics for now is still fraught in danger and then water is still very mucky.
He conduced that until learns to make leadership less attractive, less lucrative and reckless in the country.
The researcher is of the opinion that he is far away from the for now is a way of conducting in Nigeria in the words for the Reverend gentleman. If what happened in this country in April 12 and 19 2003 is what they call free and fair election. Then I will not hesitate to say to hell with democracy.
He went on to point out that what took place in Nigeria on those days had no semblemance of democratic elections.
He noted further that hundreds of thousands of the Nigerian army, the politics and lorded political things were armed to the if teeth and were let lose an innocent citizens in the name of keeping peace and ensuring free and pain election.
He noted also that the truth is that came to compel people to submission over the unprecedented submission over the presidential electoral malpractices that characterized the whole charade.
With all these pictures at it is one can say that effective participation of Christians in Nigeria politics is for now a rose.
2.5 Election Rigging
Ringing is one of the factor that militate against Christian effectively participation in politics. O. Deh (2003) has this to say the least, election 2003. Witnessed the worst rigging in the history of Nigeria. Inshore, there were no election; people were deceived to come out of their homes in the name of elections only to be. Ringing simply put is scheme and maneuvers to circumvent the wishers of the majority in favour of a selfish few and rigging in one factors that effectively militates against Christian from participating in effective party politics. He went further to say.
When we think of what, political elections should be in a decent and less corral society, the election of April 2003 were the in the history of Nigeria not peaceful, they were not fair. If one a critical Brut he above statement, if 2003 is what should be, no Christian read to go involved in the mucky waters a party politics, there's no way a Christian can participate effectively in Nigeria politics.
It is true that Nigerian cry, their eyes out those things are bad but the truth remains that only very few people are prepared to go f though what it takes to bring. About a positive change or to follow those who are prepared to make the sacrifice. With the above system one can see that even when the Christians participate effectively in politics fellowship becomes a problem since people are not willing to follow those who genuinely and desirously want to sacrifices to help the people, politics in Nigeria is for the ugly and ruthless and not for devoted Christian
Madaki (2003) state this:
I am worried because things have not gone the way we thought they would if the military recited the military have been replaced by another set of people and tigers in sheep's skin.
The researcher is seriously worried about effective Christians participation in politics, it highly placed, retire military officers like Madaki can describe our politicians and so called democrats as tigers in sheep clothing. This seriously militates against effective participation of Christians in politics. He went further to say or state. Since the commencement of democracy, we have gone into one trouble or the other with the shy locks people who think they can only wake a living and good government.
Odeh (2003) noted: To say the least in a country where leadership has always belonged to those who have. The where withal to take is by hook or by crook, where it does not matter, however is voted into power, where whoever would be the leader has always been decided long before any election.
In Nigeria since leadership belongs to those who have the ; where-withal to take it by hook or crook, without minding whoever is voted into power where whoever that will be the leader has always been decided long before any election is a bad I omen for Christian's participating effectively in politics. In Nigeria, Ebonyi State and Ishiulu Local Government Area in particular.
The international observers headed by Dr. Oskor Lebner, Dr. Mas Van, Den Bent and Dr. Heins Joecker made it very clear thus: The elections were a complete sham, an organized trend, not transparent, were not free, they were not fair, they were not peaceful. The comments of the international election observers show that the politicians have learns nothing, it puts a question mark on Christians participating effectively in party politics.
Human right activist Olisa Agbakoba (2003) has this to say partisan politics is not the same as human right activism. It is about lying, cheating, deceiving, disloyalty and all other evil things that we have in the world. In influential person amities can so describe politics as about lying, cheating, deceiving, disloyalty and all other evil things that one can think of. This is a serious Impediment against Christians effectively participation in politics.
2.6 Money Politics
Nigeria politics is deep rooted in money politics. To win lection, you must be a "MONEY BAG" or you need a good father is a "MONEY BAG" to things happen for you, with due respect to millionaires God-father Uba and Governor Ngige of Anambra State.
Olisa (2003) still has this to say:
The only way for you to win politics today is to have money. And you must be ready to do anything including killing and maiming people. He noted further predict that Nigerian will not begin to turn around in 30 to 50 years. Good men don't thrives where there is evil. So unless there's some kind of revolution …..
Olisa has said it all, the only way to think even to contest election is to have money and that one must be ready to anything including killing and maiming.
He conclude that good men don't thrive where there is evil, so unless there is a kind of God's intervention effective Christian participation in politics is not sight except the person is only a Christian by identify, the way Nigeria politics is, it is not for a serious minded God-fearing and God loving Christians participate in politics effectively the participation must be prepared to do many things that are wicked and ruthless.
v Odeh summarized it thus: that person must be prepared to tell lies in the world in order to convince the ignorant and the gullible that he alone can saluage their hope and aspirations.
v He must be prepared to steal and to accept money from Satan if possible to ensure that he has enough to distribute among the impoverished and miserable people in the remote villages who will hence forth vow to follow him even to his grave.
v He must be ready to smother his conscience in the name of politics to ensure that he can commit in-creditable atrocities without having quiches.
v He must be prepared to build up a formidable army of hook, games, which will kill his political opponents whenever he feels they are an obstruction to his ambition.
v He must be prepared to make God work like an accomplice in his crimes by presenting those crimes as the enduring dividends and pious prayer meetings.
A look at the picture pointed by Odeh shows that a Christian is not the type of person to do any of the above and as such a Christian participating effectively in politics is like the biblical Carmel passing through the eye of a needle. People plan how to rig election and control oil money and power, period, yam, Olowolab of tell magazine described gain fawehinimi as.
A philosopher king with an uncanny mental capacity and deep spiritual insight to see the invisible hear the mandible and touch the intangible, he thrives on facts and figures garnered from analysis and interpretation of events.
There is a big question begging for answer, if people like, gain, Fawehinmi with all transparency, sacrifice and suffer has no in Nigeria politics is about money and power, it is about ting in an election it's is about rigging in and rigging out to successful politicians in Nigeria, you must be prepared anything, even maiming and killing those you may consider stacks to your ambition.
Nigeria politics is characterized by money and thuggrey and is a serious impediment against effective Christian participation in politics.
Obasanjo in his book "Criminal called men" has this to say is a contradiction a complex being and a unique animal man two faces, one side of man shows his capacity to be kind, passionate, loving and to acknowledge and honors the truth.
This the divine aspect of man.
He further more to say:
The other face shows him using his ability capacity and ingenuity maliciously, selfishly, devilishly and oppressively. This is satanic aspect of man.
He concluded by saying:
Of all the calamities that have been visited upon the world and its inhabitances, the willing surrender of the human spirit of materialistic value is the worst.
From the above postulation by Obasanjo one can comfortably say that the other face that use his ability capability and ingenuity to maliciously and selfish oppress in a devilish lanner the masses politically is representing the Nigerians situation. Given the above what room is left for Christians to participate effectively in politics, since politics in Nigeria has lie coloration and application?
For the noble laurite professor Wole Soyinka the so-called 2003 election was the worst in the history of Nigeria. In his own words.
All that passed for 2003 election left the opposition reading and international observers in awe at the sheer effrontery of ballot robbery, as revealed day by day, reveals tightly centralized operation, not a sporadic series of electoral violation.
Given the above repot from non other person than the noble aureate gives a grain picture of what politics is in Nigeria using 2003 as a case study, it is difficult to talk of Christians participating effectively in politics given the criminal way in which politics is being played in the country with man constructed. It is a statement of fact that politics in Nigeria defines all known definition of the subject. The way we go about our sacrificed themselves of us, a wasted generation.
Herbert Samuel Macaukly, the Nigeria's father of nationalism
For posterity when the new Nigeria comes. Tell them for their tomorrow, we give our today. And for all Nigerians of the I North and South as my moustache and bow tie is parallel and inseparable. So shall the unity between the North and the South is indestructible.
The way we go about participating in politics and the way politics is being played in the country, our generation is a colossal. Shame to our forefather with the way things are, it is difficult for Christians to participate effectively in politics. In the actual sense there is no participating democracy in Nigeria, there is no election except you are talking of institutionalized rigging that normal election so of participation a lot of obstacles are on the way the elective Christians participation in politics.
According to guardians newspaper of March 3, 2005, captioned U.S report scores Nigeria low on electoral system and human right state's. Nigerians still find it difficult of folly assert their rights to change their leading through ballot box. The report, which is authorized by the U.S congress, is central to American politics toward other countries. This leaves a question mark on ability to participation effectively in the political process due to schemes and maneuvers put in place by our political leaders to short change our right to choose our leaders. The report went further to the abridging of Nigerians right vote and possibly Change their government as a pointer that not much has happened the political terrain.
From the above one can see to participate are, we disenfranchised, since your vote doesn't matter whether you vote or not, now then can a Christian participate effective in politics since there is no room for participation.
2.7 God-Fatherism in Nigeria Politics
The governor of Anambra State Dr. Chris Ngige was abducted on the instruction of this political God-father. Mr. Chris Uba, the onus of the matter being that he sponsored governor Ngige to become governor, that he invested some billions to make sure he wins the election. Ngige has this to say:
It will not augur well for Nigerian's nascent democracy, if policemen acting on the order of individuals can abduct a sitting Teraor and keep him under custody for five hours. Which individual is "Ngige" talking about? Is talking about his political Godfather effectively since Godfathers determine who participates, who wins and who gets what or who must lose.
He went further to say:
My immunity as a state governor against arrest and prosecution has been violated. The have desecrated my office. Governor Ngige narrated the effort of some politicians in the state to sign away state money to them, he went further to state that at times they forced him to sign a dated cheques when he refused they allegedly threatened him to death. Ruminating through the oriental at Governor Ngige one can see a serious threat to Christian participate effectively in politics. The hassles in participating in Nigeria politics. Is belter in imagined than real, Ade Shoyebo (2004) noted thus being a voter these days is not a roses, the quality of public debate, has declined shocking since days of shockingly since the days of our founding father.
He went further to stress:
Bombarded on all sides by alleged experts. He will dared by the intricate ballet of various invented terms. Knowing for some only that he and his family are feeling the pinch is it reasonable to expect even compression let alone self-restraint from such a voter.
This is the leaky vessel in which Nigerian 21st century democracy has set sail. Here at home disenchantment on political participation grouse in bounds, people are not interested in political participation because corruption in government is high, the poor are getting poorer, no known political ideology, the electorates are fed up and mass apathy is the order of the body. Salvation cannot come through the polices, or through the leaders. In the words and do the deeds, with the way things are, it against effectives Christian's participation in politics.
2.8 The Political Sovereign
Every political system claims to be representing the people be it western, eastern a non-designed group. The electorate is said to be the political sovereign and it is where the electorate is the political sovereign that you behold the beauty of democracy can this be said of Nigeria? People find it difficult to participate in Nigeria political because the electorate is not the sovereign if you like, you vote, if you like don't vote the winners have already been determined by the powers that be. Adigwe (2002) put it thus:
It is the electorate that is the political sovereign and it is sufficient to say that they are two types of democratic system. Once is based on the motion that society is a community of individuals r the different, but reconcilable interests.
He stated further:
Consequently, the adherents of this belief have constructed electoral system based on the right of each adult to vote the way the chooses. This is what part of effective political participation Bought to be and this is not the case in Nigeria, hence the setback out effective Christians participation in politics.
2.9. Representative Government
Representative government is the same thing as participating government or democratic government. Representative in participatory government has its beauty and rugly side; the beauty can enhance participating, while the ugly work against participating in politics. Adigwe stated thus:
The British created participating democracy with the secret lot system as a key of its success, by creating the secret ballot system. The abolished all sort of primitive forms of voting.
how his abductors backed by uninformed men stormed his office bundled-slaughter him in to the boot of a car and speed off, that was the end of his tenure as Chairman of the local government area. Seeing all this, some one with love and fear of. God will find it extremely difficult to participate effectively in politics, Thuggrey is now the arrowhead of Nigeria politics. In the past they use -to give or bribe the electorate with money but today no way they prate to give it to the thing to uncast terrors on the electorate so as force them in submission on abhor.
2.10 Legal Constraints
Legal aspect and constraints has been militating against effective participation, in politics various court cases has militated against participation you will be doing a court cases have, militated, you want re-claim Expires. The Nigeria legal. System has contributed in not shell measure towards the raps of participating democracy, genuine cases are delayed with put causes justice delayed, being justice denied.
For instance, an Amambia high court headed by justice Stanley Nnaji gav.e an order-dismissing governor Christ Ngige from
office people who between this has constituted a stumbling block towards effective Christian participation in politics because you are aware that if you are rigged out, the chances of your regaining your mandate is one in two hundred cases.
Hence this has led to apathy and I don't care type of attitude to wards participating n polities.
2.11 Thuggery as a Militating Factor
One factor has been seriously militating against well meaning Nigerian from effectively participating in politics as thuggrey. For instance the lingering political crisis between Oyo state governors on 23rd March, 2004 took a new twist as suspected thing destroyed the campaign rostrum meant for the governor's use the guardian reported: Armed thing deseeded on the canopies and smarted them to pieces the thing numbering about 40. Had besieged the venue in four vehicles. This incident, occurred in broad day light and if this can happen to a governor with his security details, our wonders who else is safe.
2.12 Political Assassination
Political assassination and attempt has characterized Nigeria political arena, this has serious impact on people generally and Christians in particular from Patticiting effectively in politics. Look at the death of Bola Ige the nation chief law officer.
The death of Dikkibu to mention but this few one just a peep into political motivated killing that made a lot of people unwilling to participate effectively in politics, Christians alike. Former federal capital territory (FCT) ministers LT. Gen Jeremiah useno condemned the current spate of political killings and the level of corruption in the country. He stated that Government has not done well in terms of corruption. Right in government there is corruption; political killing in the country gives on unabated.
Professor whole Soynika describe the people democratic party as a nest of killers, he was referring to the various act as assassination and attempted political assassination in the country.
These spate of killings have made many vow that if this is what political participation is all about, you better court me off.
Many have vowed not to participate in Nigeria politics at all that is
that make people lose interests in effective political participation in the and Ishielu local Government Area GA, in particular .
The aim of this review is to accept an Exposition at the variable under study. Through the Examination of the various Authors and publications. The work focused on literature, related to participation in politics, the political process and election, it outered into Africa brand of politics which Nigeria is also playing to her extreme. The work looked at the concept of politics and government, participation democracy. The concept of power. It also Examined the factors that militate against effective Christian participation in politics ad it identified such factors. God-Fatherism, money politics, thuggrey, secret ballot system, killing and maiming political association and legal constraints that borders on not discharging justice on time and denying justice out rightly the researcher concluded that thing like political assassination, thuggrey, ringing money politics, secret ballot system and God-Fatherism among other combine to militate against effective Christian participation in politics in Nigeria. The researcher intends to relate her to chapter