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Socialist Democracy April-May 2018


29 March 2018

Print | Text only print | Facebook  Twitter

SPN IS NOW REGISTERED: Hope Of A Better Nation Beacons

By Adaramoye Michael Lenin

Many Nigerians have come to the inevitable realization that the pro-capitalist parties have nothing to offer the present and future other than doom. These were the same persons deceived few years ago into supporting the APC change mantra. If there is any lesson that can be gleaned from the illusion the people had in the APC/Buhari administration; it is that Nigerians are seeking for a genuine alternative. Importantly, many Nigerians that aggressively campaigned for the mysterious change regime of APC/Buhari were not even card-carrying members of the APC; they just wanted something better for their nation. But it turned out to have been energy spent in the wrong direction! Although this terrible situation was made possible not because Nigerians were stupid, but due to the failure of pro-capitalist labour leaders in providing an alternative political platform to the anti-poor political parties.

How pathetic would it have been for 2019 to come with Nigerians having no choice than to again choose between the deep blue sea and the devil. Obviously, the historic victory of the registration of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN), after a severe and lengthy struggle, saved us from this momentous tragedy. For over three years, the party has had to fight thoroughly against the bourgeois apparatus at every stage of its development. It was the unrelenting agitation of socialists, activists and workers that produced this victory.

Over the years, the oppressive ruling class has done everything possible to preserve the political space for itself; it has through every means ensured the crippling of any genuine alternative to its anti-poor arrangement. In 1989, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), under the leadership of Pascal Bafyau, founded the Nigeria Labour Party (NLP), but this was met with stern hostility of the ruling class organized under the Babangida military Government. However, the NLP was greeted with mass acceptance and great enthusiasm by the working masses. Nigerian workers saw it as a clear alternative to the anti-masses rule of the military government. However Pascal Bafyau and other pro-capitalist labour leaders, scared by this enthusiasm, then deserted the party when it was denied registration. The reactionary labour leaders refused to mobilize the mass of workers, youths, artisans and masses who had already pulled their weight behind the NLP to demand the registration of the party and the democratic right of the people to form a party. What was lacking in the NLP was a courageous and clearheaded leadership, something the SPN aims to provide.

The 21st century tale of The Labour Party is much more tragic. All efforts by genuine activists to build the party into a genuine workers' party were frustrated by vicious right-wing labour leaders. These labour leaders not just neglected the party after its formation, they also laid the foundation for its inevitable collapse and hijack by pro-capitalist politicians by monetizing the party. In the very foundation of the Labour Party was the seed properly watered, by reactionary labour leaders, to germinate into a pro-bourgeois party. The Labour Party stands as nothing different from pro-bourgeois parties like APGA, ACCORD PARTY, SDP etc. The most tragic 'accident' of the Labour Party is not just the influx of rotten pro-capitalist politicians like Akala, Mimiko, etc., but in the decision of Oshiomhole (one of the progenitors of the party) to neglect the party for the then ACN - one of the legacy parties of the APC.

Despite the cataclysmic failure of the ruling party and the terrible past of the PDP, these two parties still enjoy victory at the poll. Is it that Nigerians suffer from amnesia or myopia? Quite the opposite! The absence of a genuine political alternative organized against anti-poor policies has given these pro-capitalist parties the joy. In fact, poor Nigerians see electoral period as the only period to get little out of the big but closed pockets of the pro-capitalist politicians. However, with the existence of a political party with a clear socialist programme, this is about to stop.

Nigerian working masses have embarked on many electoral adventures without the opportunity to choose a genuine alternative. Generally in elections it has nearly always been faced with having to choose one section of the ruling class over the other without any fundamental alternative. The registration of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN), has provided an alternative to the anti-poor political parties. And now there is a choice to choose between a pro-masses party and anti-masses parties. However to make the party attractive, formidable and mass-based, Socialists and change-seeking individuals must rigorously work to make it a platform of agitation and campaign in the interests of the working people and youth nationally as well as in support of their daily struggles in workplaces, communities and schools. This is our immediate task.