AN CRITICAL APPRAISAL OF SUSTAINABLE DEMOCRACY AS A DEPENDENT VARIABLE TO NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT
The primary aim of this research work is to deeply investigate and identify the national development in the achievement of sustainable democracy in anambra state, and how their attitude foster, encourage, promote or retard the development of the area since the formation of the anids. To conduct a thorough research, the researcher sampled the population and those chosen were administered with questionnire. There findings were analyzed using simple percentage method. Based on the analyses the researcher found that anambra state with a laudable development strategy that is development oriented and which has the peoples interest at heart. Sequel to the above, the researcher recommended that government should support and assist both financially and otherwise to the development projects initiated and executed by the anambra state government which are in the best interest of the people to foster national development and sustainable democtracy. In conclusion, therefore, the role of anids should be well comed by the people of anambra state for the interest of maintaining their status quo in the area of national development and sustainable democracy.
Sustainable democracy a dependent variable to national development cannot be over emphasized in the sense that National development is the bedrock of every nation. Whether developed or underdeveloped in the nation. They still work towards improving or maintaining their national development.
National development is also the gradual manifestation of positive changes in the economic, industrial, political, social, cultural and administrative life of a country. In viewing the process of a country, term national development is more comprehensive than economic development or economic growth.
Democracy on the other hand is a system of government which gives periodic opportunities for the masses to choose their leaders. It ensures massive participation in governmental activities. A sustainable democracy is therefore a controlled reasonably high and stable level of democracy.
Having seen the meaning of the two concepts, that is National development and sustainable democracy, it is of no doubt that sustainable democracy will help increase the rate of national development because of the special feature of democracy.
The aim of this research is to show how sustainable democracy improves national development in Anambra State. Also, the barriers to sustainable democracy will not be left out.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
A critical study on sustainable democracy and national development has shown that sustainable democracy is crucial for national development. They manifested in the context of Anambra State from 2007-2009 where Peter Obi’s administration made a tremendous efforts to carry out and execute development projects for the national development. As a matter of facts, it becomes paramount important that in order for Obi’s administration to achieve his aim of bringing sustainable democracy in Anambra state so as to foster national development he introduced Anambra integrated development strategy (ANIDS) which serves as machinery to carryout developmental projects.
There are however, studies which have demonstrated how political, united and harmonies Anambra people have through this strategy, achieving national development without waiting for the central government to take initiative.
It is believed that national development and sustainable democracy in Anambra state is now on its climax since the inception of Anambra integrated development strategy (ANIDS). But before I delineate (describe) the identifiable developments attained in Anambra through this strategy in order to achieve sustainable democracy, let us look into and examine what development is all about.
The concept of development is as old as the creation of man immediately after the creation of man and the emergence of his consciousness in his environment of operation. It become very obvious to him that his immediate secular environment possess a crude nature. A nature, which in its character, is against the existentiality of man, hinges on his three basic needs which are food, shelter and clothing consequently, for man to eat, he must hunt, gather fruits and develop agricultural technology for him to be sheltered, he must build houses and develop contraction technology, for him to cloth, he must make his cloth and develop manufacturing and mining technology. This implies that development in human socio-economic environment hinges on technological base will enable man to surmount these environmental obstacles that are problems to his existence.
One of the greatest problems of the developing countries is development. This is the more reason why it occupies a part of every national discussion with much emphasis of it pursued through planning. The problems of development are permeating that it affects every sector of the economy as well as individuals.
Todano (1985) in his own view defined development as a multi-dimensional process involving the re-organization and re-orientation of the entire economic and social system. This involves in addition to improvement of income and output, radical changes in institutional, social and administrative structure as well as in popular attitudes custom and beliefs. Development is then both a physical process and a state of mind, involving the transformation of institution and the change in the thinking of people.
Abah (2000:1) Sees development as a tri-dimensional concept having a utilitarian or consumatory dimension which connotes increase in the quantity of usable items available to man in society. Based on the above interpretation of development, one can see development as a social change in which new ideas are introduced into a social system thereby bringing change in the parameters of political, economical and socio-cultural.
On the same view, Rodney (1972) sees development both from the level of individual and that of the society as a whole. At level of the individual, development implies increased skill and capacity, greater freedom, creativity, self disciplined, responsibility and material well being on the level of the society, development cannot be seen purely as an economic affair, but rather as an overall social process, which is dependent upon the outcome of man’s efforts to deal with his national environment.
From what we have said so far concerning development, I would not hesitate to say that ANIDS Introduced by Peter Obi’s administration have been able to effect some changes in national development and sustainable democracy in some of the areas mentioned in discussed in the national development of Anambra.
Anambra state was created in the year 1991 with 21 Local Government Authorities (L.G.A) It shares a common boundary with Abia, Delta, Enugu, Imo and Kogi states.
The state is well known for its industrial centers and markets, with 75% of the state involved in Agriculture located in the south-East region of Nigeria, Anambra state is the center of the major transport routes in Nigeria Onitsha Expressway and the Onitsha Owerri highway. The position of the state makes it a focal point for transport and trade in Nigeria.
Leadership of the state, started from the creation with the military regime meanwhile the democratic governance of the state started with Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife (Okwadike Igboukwu) through military toppled the nascent democracy till 1999 when Dr. Chinwoke Mbadinuju emerged as the Governor till 2003, when another election was conducted in order to replaced the then Government. The April 2003, election saw Dr. Nwabueze Ngige (MOON) into power instead of Mr. Peter Obi as the case may be. Then in June 14th 2006, the appeal and supreme count granted Mr. Obi the power to the power to be the governor of Anambra state. Hence as an astute and efficient administrator, he Peter Obi formed Anambra state integrated Development strategy (ANIDS) as an umbrella for all development of all programmes throughout his tenure ANIDS is like a vehicle for the delivery of the millennium Development of all sectors of the economy, it is also a realizable strategy for Anambra people to attained their sustainable democracy.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
It is a notable fact that sustainable democracy and national development in Anambra state confronted by numerous problems on a close observation of development in Anambra state, one notice that the problem faced by sustainable democracy and national development is on its great magnitude.
There has been the problem of corruption, the representatives when corrupt willing elections to their own advantage thereby working against the democratic feature which says that elections should be free and fair, corruption will contribute to the backwardness of state.
Secondly, dependency of the judiciary is another problem confronting the sustainable democracy and national development of the state. Even when a democratic government is claimed to be operating, the judiciary that ought to be independence still dances the tune of both the executive and judiciary. they are being bribed in the discharge of their duty thereby military against sustainable democracy which will deplete the plans have in mind for national development.
In Nigeria, equality before the law as characteristics of democracy is practiced only in paper not practical some top government officials break the laws on daily basis, yet go Scot-free. The facts that these top officials are not charged to court while in office makes them see themselves as people above the law and hinder the effective functioning of sustainable democracy.
The press is not free to let loose some information that will be of paramount importance to the public due to fear of favour. They only say what they are asked to say, by so doing, sustainable democracy cannot be achieved.
Finally, most of the populations are ignorant and doubt even knows their rights and they are trampled upon.