Monday, 31 May 2021

Defection and the question of loyalty by Edim M Edim

Over the previous weeks and still counting, the Cross River State political sphere has been kept busy as a result of the defection of Governor Benedict Ayade to the national ruling party All Progressives Congress (APC). This move has caused serious political tension in the state, even as the 2023 General Elections draw closer. Some have followed the bold steps of the Governor by dumping the People's Democratic Party (PDP) to the join him in his new party All Progressives Congress (APC). And those who have refused to follow him in some quarters are regarded as "men of integrity", and others regarded as "hungry bootlickers" seeking financial benefits.

Howbeit, the question of loyalty comes in. What's is loyalty? Loyalty according to the English Dictionary is "faithfulness or devotion to some person, cause or nation." In politics, loyalty is one of the prerequisites to a successful political career. And this loyalty is tested when situations like defection among others set in. And one may ask, should followers be loyal to their political leaders or the political parties they belong at the time been? I guess the answer is relative. But, loyalty should be to a political party first, then to an individual politician. Because it is the Party that constitutionally gives one an elective office or position. Without a political party, there is no political leader. 

Politics is a game of interest, and no one belongs to a place (party) where his political ambitions will not be achieved or sustained in a long run. I stand to be corrected, but I think there is no political figure in Cross River State that has remained in one Political Party since 1999 till date. Do not only celebrate those who refused to defect with their leaders, but criticize those who left. Both serve the same purpose; loyalty. The formers' loyalty lies to the party and the latter's to an individual, all in the name of interest. Let's learn to respect others decisions and actions provided it's legal. We should not regard ourselves as enemies because of our deviance in interest, ideas, decisions and ambitions. In politics, there are no permanent enemies, but permanent interests. 

Edim M. Edim