How much does a vote cost?
To a person of value it may cost him or her character, what about Amos Adamu? Theman who allegedly offered to sell his World Cup bid vote and was provisionally suspended a fortnight ago by Federation of International Football Association (FIFA). A vote may cost the executive board member $800,000.00 to be paid twice. That is the way life goes, as a man who has gotten so high in his field, could bring himself down by allowing a singular act of selfishness anddishonour bring his nation shame over his act. But come to think of it, is it the first time? I don’t think so; A lot has been said of this influential Sport administrator though, who despite been readily known in the football circles as a FIFA executive member, Confederation of African Football (CAF) executive member, as well as head of the West African football house, West African Football Union (WAFU) allowed himself to be cheapened by his love for money.
Over the years many accusations had been levied against this very wealthy civil servant but to no avail. With the evidence, it will be a surprise if the ‘Mr. Fix it’ of Nigerian football can eventually fix this mess he is in at the moment, something that cannot but come to mind is where is all of Adamu’s money from? He is said to haveprivate companies, properties across Nigeria, as well as running chains of Hotels. While other sport bodies like the Athletics Federation accused him of financial misconduct, there was also a time when the head of the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) also accused him of trying to divert the sponsorship money of the federation into personal pocket. All this Adamu had successfully fixed. Can he fix this mess once again? That is left to be answered.
An analysis of our nation’s electoral process calls for the measure of the value we place on every single vote we cast; maybe in our subconscious, we really do not believe that our vote counts. Like in the case of a rural woman who is largely influenced by the bag of salt, rice and what have you, that is shared doing and after electioneering campaign, that woman believes that is her own gain of the process rather than pushing for her stake with her casted vote. The young man who is supposed to defend his future with his vote or at least free his conscience by placing his vote for the person that he believes will deliver, protect his interest and safe guard his tomorrow, he will rather sell his vote for as cheap as a N1, 000.00 that will only pass for the coming meal. Poverty in the land has dealt so badly with the populace that even the fairness of judgment is affected by it.
While we continue to count how many have demeaned their personality with the sale of their vote, many still say that their vote does not eventually decide who takes the day, as most of the elections are always marred by rigging and other forms of mal practices. To birth the new Nigeria we envisage. It is expedient we begin to look at our vote as the deciding factor to any elective position even when it seems not to be for now – with results reversal after 41 months in office in some cases – we still believe that in the nearest future things will take a better shape. As we expect the electoral process to improve. We are also expected to do our own bit which is voting rightly and wisely, for the person who we believe will stand for our betterment. A vote sold is a conscience sealed! Our Nigeria will only become better when we begin to look at the little difference we all can make to better her lot.
Whether it is Adamu, you or me, the amount we place on our vote is a testimony of our self value. Looking back at the Amos Adamu saga, his action has further brought to our consciousness the need for us to continually strive to uphold our civic responsibility of voting right. As we await the general election let us all say no to vote sales and preach against it as much as we can, as it has become a flaw on our political process. Lastly to me, the cost of a vote is the sum total of all personal value backed with the expectation of the eventual possible outcome of it. And that tells the quality of the person who sells his or her vote.