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  1. 1

    Austen AKHAGBEME

    I couldn’t agree with you less, Martin Ihembe. The Democracy Deception has been the bane of Africa development. The earlier African states begin the search for true Stateness (Strong developed states governed by pseudo-absolutism) the better. Development sustains democracy not the other way round.

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  2. 2

    O.E. Nnabuihe

    Ihembe, has critically articulated his argument for a strong state, the absence which is the foundation, in the Nigerian case, of political disorder and several conflicts.

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  3. 3

    Uzzi Macaulay

    Democracy is a most difficult system of government to implement owing to the fact that it requires a preponderant percentage of its target beneficiaries to be highly educated or at least sufficiently enlightened for it to work.

    One critical element of State Building is the process of political socialisation which lends the shoulders of citizens to support the political institutions of the state. Walter Rodney in his ‘How Europe Underdeveloped Africa’s gave a robust definition of development as the increasing capacity of a people to understand their environment and mk it work for them in all ramifications. One critical aspect he singles out is functional educational, the absence of which makes the sustenance of development difficult.

    As such considering the prevalence of illiteracy and ‘mis-enlightenment’ in Nigeria coupled the weak state of its institutions (INEC in mind) getting democracy to work is indeed an exercise in futility except to the extent to which it serves a minority class of “political entrepreneurs.”

    I therefore, align with the “stateness first” thesis because strong and functional institutions sustained by an enlightened mass makes the move from electoralism to consolidating democracy that more attainable.

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