Pete Edochie says he gave up on Nigerian elections after the annulment of the June 12 1993 polls.
The actor, in an interview, said he has no lust for partaking in political discussions because they give him no hope.
He told Chude Jideonwo, the media entrepreneur, that the annulled poll is the only credible one Nigeria has had.
Nigeria held a presidential election on June 12, 1993, the first since the 1983 coup ended the second republic.
The election was the outcome of a transition to civilian rule spearheaded by the military ruler Ibrahim Babangida.
The unofficial result of the election, although it wasn’t declared, indicated a victory for Moshood Abiola of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) who defeated Bashir Tofa of the National Republican Convention (NRC).
But the winner was never announced as the election was annulled by Babangida who cited electoral irregularities.
The annulment led to protests, political unrest, Bababagida’s resignation, the emergence of a weak interim civilian government, and the ultimate continuation of military rule in the country with Sani Abacha as the head of state.
Edochie said the annulled 1993 poll never saw electoral irregularities as Babangida’s government had suggested.
“That election was the freest and the best election we have had in this country. I am 76, so, if I’m not saying it with fear of contradiction, I am saying it with plenty of authority and with plenty of conviction,” the veteran actors said.
“You didn’t see people snatching ballot boxes, creating problems, shooting around and scaring people. That election was cancelled, and I lost hope. Ever since, we have never had a free and fair election.”
The actor likened the annulled 1993 polls to that of 2023 which saw Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) defeat the populist Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP), which is still in court, to be elected as the president.
“A lot of people say that history repeats itself because we learn nothing from history itself. History offers us a lot of lessons, but we prefer to ignore those lessons and keep repeating our mistakes,” Edochie added.
“Each time we have an election, there’s always chaos, consequent upon it, because somehow there is this element of criminal ingenuity in our constitution. We want to find a quick fix for something which is not necessarily right.
“You find old politicians (septuagenarian, octogenarian politicians), who have little, or nothing left to offer the country. But they want to remain there till infinity. That’s not in the interest of the country.
“The youths of this country have been insulted. Their sensitivity is brutalized. Their aspirations asphyxiated. 2023 comes and what do you see? You have to pay a hundred million to purchase a declaration of intent form.
“How many youngsters are going to come out and do that just so they can take part in politics? Again, it is the hand of the octogenarian political journeyman that we see in play and that’s not very good.”
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