Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Edwin Madunagu

    How should Nigerian Leftists vote?

How should Nigerian Leftists vote?

We begin with a proposition which may be framed this way: “The question as to how Nigerian Leftists should vote in the 2019 general elections will not arise if there are in existence, and participating in the elections, political parties that are serious, clearly Leftist, ideologically anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist and categorical on each of the burning questions before the Nigerian [...]

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    Revisiting ‘democracy and dictatorship’

Revisiting ‘democracy and dictatorship’

Let us begin by quickly recalling two bits of Nigeria’s recent history. First, at the close of 1983, a military junta overthrew and supplanted the elected civilian government of Shehu Shagari, the first and only president of Nigeria’s Second Republic (1979-1983). Then, early in 1985, in the second year of the new military regime, which was headed by Major-General Muhammadu [...]

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    ‘In defence of history’

‘In defence of history’

I cannot now remember exactly how I first encountered this phrase: “In defence of history”. But I think it was during my days on the Editorial Board of The Guardian newspaper, between mid-1980s and mid-1990s. The specific source must have been Odia Ofeimun, a friend and colleague that I had met and engaged about seven years before I landed in [...]

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    In this 20th year of ‘democracy’

In this 20th year of ‘democracy’

Nigeria’s Fourth Republic, which is currently running, was born on May 29, 1999—with Olusegun Obasanjo as inaugural executive president. A year later, on May 29, 2000, the president proclaimed May 29 of every year Nigeria’s “Democracy Day”. The day was also added to the list of the country’s national public holidays. It was a unilateral executive decision—by which I mean [...]

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    ‘The educator must be educated’

‘The educator must be educated’

This piece is a memo to the Nigerian Left. In an ideal situation, on account of the importance I attach to the subject, the document would have appeared, first, as an internal memo to an appropriate organ of the movement. For the same reason of importance, it would not have stopped at the organ or leadership level. The memo would [...]

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    Notes on Leftist politics in Nigeria

Notes on Leftist politics in Nigeria

Recently, a young man who teaches English atAbia State University phoned to inform me of an impending conference on the bicentenary of the birth of Karl Marx. But what the call provoked in me was not the remembrance of Marx and his enduring legacy but anger over the fact that some people still regularly irritate me with chants of “death [...]

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    The left and Nigeria’s 2019 election

The left and Nigeria’s 2019 election

In late 1978, or early 1979, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, one of Nigeria’s frontline political leaders and the leader of the newly-proclaimed Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN), came to Calabar in continuation of his presidential campaign tour. The ban on political activities imposed after the military coup of January 15, 1966, had been lifted four months earlier and Chief Awolowo had [...]

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    Between history and current demands in Nigeria

Between history and current demands in Nigeria

One of the propositions of Leftists’ theory of history is that human beings are the makers of their own history. A corollary to this – that human beings do not make this history simply as they wish, but that they make it with materials and circumstances fashioned and transmitted by and from the past – is as important as the [...]

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    Further notes on people’s manifesto in Nigeria

Further notes on people’s manifesto in Nigeria

In a previous article on this subject (February 21), I proposed that a Nigerian people’s manifesto at this particular critical time in our country’s history should have a double character. It should be, in the first place, a Nigerian Left’s manifesto in the ordinary sense of the term: “a public declaration of intentions, motives or views” or a “public statement [...]

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    Drafting a people’s manifesto

Drafting a people’s manifesto

It is now appropriate, indeed imperative, for the Nigerian Left to present its own manifesto to the country. This should be in form of a people’s manifesto, a people’s charter of demands in a situation of national emergency. A people’s manifesto at this point in our history is not a dissertation-like programme of social transformation, the type of thing any [...]

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    Before the next round

Before the next round

I am inviting our country’s popular-democratic forces, especially the Nigerian Left, to join me in looking back once again. We have to look as the Nigerian state and the various fractions, factions, groups and blocs of the ruling class now begin to take the country through another political turbulence that will end in a reconstitution of their political representation. It [...]

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    How will a breakthrough come?

How will a breakthrough come?

About five years ago, in late January and early February 2013, The Guardian carried my three-part column titled “Struggling for seats in a sinking boat.” When, recently, I examined the first part of that series (the one that appeared on January 31, 2013), I was struck by the freshness of what I wrote. For a moment I thought I was commenting [...]

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November 9, 2018USDGBPEUR
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