TROUBLED TIMES

Covid made heroes out of some politicians

Every cloud has a silver lining.

In Summary
  • Some politicians have come out as the people’s champions as most of their colleagues continue to engage in corruption, even in the face of death.
  • As we gear up for the 2022 general election, revenue-sharing impasse is perhaps a clarion call to politicians to change for the better.
Members of parliament and senate at the parliament gallery during the opening of the 11th parliament.
Members of parliament and senate at the parliament gallery during the opening of the 11th parliament.
Image: FILE

Every cloud has a silver lining. Covid-19 will leave trails of destruction and shattered dreams. But it might rekindle the aspirations of some politicians, apart from creating billionaires. Some politicians have come out as the people’s champions as most of their colleagues continue to engage in corruption, even in the face of death.

When the revenue-sharing bill impasse took shape, many thought that if the government endorsed it, then it would sail through the Senate. Ten times the House has failed to reach a consensus. The ruling party wanted its preferred formula to see the light of day and at some point, the Majority leader threatened to dewhip party members who defied the government position. 

But youthful senators, with zeal and courage, defied state machinery and dangled carrots to stand with the counties on the losing end. Now, they are political heavyweights. Some senators who before did not see eye to eye looked set to forge a new path.

A day is a long time in politics but the turn of events, in standing for the independence of the Senate despite pressure, is promising. The Senate, in the melee, has established itself as the upper House. The debate was lively and all sides participated. I’m not sure whether the same would have been said if the bill had been before the National Assembly.

The claims that some senators may have been bribed by the government to change their stand remained just that as the government side continued to be defeated even after the arrest of three legislators to frustrate the opposing side.

As we gear up for the 2022 general election, this event is perhaps a clarion call to politicians to change for the better. Our politics should be based on the foundation of established institutions, which should live up to the expectations of the common man.