Introduction

In this pamphlet, the Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM) x-rays the three years of civil rule in Nigeria and looks at the likely course of events in the coming years. Most importantly, we explain what the working masses and their organizations need to do to get the country out of the precipice it is heading as a result of capitalist misrule. 

As we were going to press, the controversy over issue of the two weeks ultimatum given to President Olusegun Obasanjo, by the House of Representatives to resign or be impeached was still raging. The president was accused of “monumental inadequacies, ineptitude, persistent disrespect for the rule of law and the obvious corruption being perpetrated in the presidency which exposes Mr. President’s inability to steer the ship of the state as its president”.

As true as the accusations are, it will however be erroneous to think that removing Obasanjo will make any better change or that those behind the attempt are acting in the interest of the society. The reality is that we are confronted by the grave crisis of a neo-colonial capitalist state operated by anti-poor political elites both in the legislature and the executive. Giving the unprincipled character of the members of the National Assembly, the whole impeachment threat may be another ploy to extort more money or other concession from the executive as it had been several times in the past three years.

But in the event Obasanjo is impeached, the country will only be plunged into deeper crisis. In the first instance, this present dispensation cannot yield any better alternative. In particular, should the current vice-president, Atiku Abubakar, succeeds an impeached Obasanjo, this will further heighten the nationality question. The result will be greater instability that will further threaten the fragile civil rule.

As we explain inside this pamphlet, neither Obasanjo and his cabinet nor members of the National Assembly or any section of the capitalist class can guarantee democracy and decent working and living conditions for the masses. These can only be attained and sustained by the mass struggles of the masses and conscious efforts of trade unions, students’ organizations, community groups, NCP, etc. Such efforts must be galvanized into an independent mass working people’s political party whose goal will be to end the misrule of the capitalist elite and to transform society along socialist lines. It is how this objective can be realized that should preoccupy labor and youth activists.

Democratic Socialist Movement, Nigeria, August 19th, 2002

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