Voice of Emancipation – The Balance of Power. 

Voice of Emancipation – The Balance of Power.

By Kayode Emola

21 October 2022

Events over the recent days and weeks in the UK have left many people around the world wondering what is happening in this country. Whilst to those accustomed to life in the UK, this is not a surprise at all – the system is built to ensure that no one person has absolute control of everyone. Simply put, there are checks and balances to ensure that power is not abused.

People often think that those with political power control everything around us, from what we can earn to what we can spend. However, if the story of the now resigned UK Prime Minister, Liz Truss, can teach us just one thing, it is that those who hold political power are supposed to be a check for those who wield the economic power and vice versa.

The UK’s economy revolves around trade, with the market dictating many events of the ordinary man’s life. This principle has been the bedrock of the country since the British created their vast empire of the late 19th/20th century. The entire impetus for the empire centred on trade, creating a system where it is impossible to separate the political power from the economic. Any changes in the one inescapably impacts upon the other.

From the initiation of her campaign to the duration of her tenure Prime Minister, Liz Truss’ fate seemed irrevocably sealed by the policies to which she clung, policies designed to please the public but which, with hindsight, would never have been feasible to implement. The world was only just recovering from the economic shock waves of the Covid-19 pandemic, during which the UK had incurred $600 billion of debt. In the wake of the slow recovery following this came the war between Russia and Ukraine: causing further disruption to the global market and the resulting surge in inflation of the costs of goods and services. The consequences of these events were felt across the globe; even the UK, in all its hubris, was not immune.

Disregarding the fact that the UK inflation had hit double digits for the first time in over four decades, Liz Truss rode into office on the promise of financial gratuity for all. Ultimately, time would reveal this to be nothing more than a slogan without any thought given to the practical realities of how this was to be achieved. These policies, if implemented would result in a deficit of over £60 billion in the UK expenditure that would need to be met, one way or another. In the absence of any proposed alternative, it seemed that it could only be funded through increasing the country’s borrowing, which would lead to future cuts and possible austerity. The markets reacted to her proposals immediately, and the resultant crash in the value of the UK economy signalled the end of Liz Truss’ journey before it had even begun.

Amidst the mess, however, one thing that may be commended is the swift reaction by the UK parliamentarians. They chose to take a decisive action, rather than attempting to merely plaster over a very precarious situation. Ultimately, common sense prevailed and the UK Prime Minister did the right thing and resigned her position.

What we need to take from this is that we, too, need to not allow ourselves to be soothed by the empty promises of politicians who we know will go to fail the people again and again. Recall, President Buhari promised to make the naira equivalent to the dollar. It has been over seven years since that pledge, and the Naira has, in fact, depreciated against the dollar by over 400%. At his election, the exchange rate was around ₦150 to $1. Today, $1 buys over ₦700. Moreover, Buhari promised that there would be a stable supply of electricity for all Nigerians within six months of his entering office. None of us could say that our national electricity supply is reliable, yet we continue to settle for empty promises from ignoble politicians. Even at the time of writing, Nigerians are preparing to elect another recycled leader from the pool of those who destroyed Nigeria in the first place.

Rather than continuing this path of self-abasement, allowing ourselves to be placated by the empty promises of corrupt and self-serving politicians, we need to change our path. We elect these people ostensibly to look after the interests of the populace at large – when they fail to do so, they ought to be held to account.

The Yoruba struggle for an independent nation is a crusade for real governance. We must ensure the political elite are made to know that they do not hold the economic power of our land. Any political power that does not have regard for the economic power is bound to fail woefully and this is exactly the situation we are witnessing in Nigeria. The country’s economy is in shambles, derelict to the point of being unable to ever recover. Therefore, there is no reason for Yoruba to remain part of this failed state.

The Yoruba people need now to rise up in unison and reject any and all forms of bad governance going on in Nigeria. We must now take a resolute stance on what is acceptable in our politicians, and we must make it clear that we will not settle for even one iota less – for as soon as we accept one compromise, the bar will slip lower and lower until we find ourselves in a worse situation than surrounds us even today. We must stand firm for truth, justice and integrity, for this is a battle that can be won. All that it requires that we hold fast to our standards and unite.

Related Articles

Back to top button