Upon observation, the Achilles’ heel of Ivorian politics is undoubtedly the blatant absence of ideas. Ivorian political actors have accustomed us to their ingenuity in producing political quarrels and anecdotes. The headlines in the national press consistently cover quarrels between people or between political chapels. Nowhere, once again, is it about ideas. Question: With what do the 2020 presidential contenders want to govern Côte d’Ivoire? Obviously, with political quarrels.
Why are our politicians unable to produce political ideas? Politics is a job that requires qualifications. Only those with ideas can exercise it and exercise it well for the benefit of the community. Every first-year student of political science knows that people are led with three instruments: strength, money and knowledge. Why is it that in Côte d’Ivoire, only force and money structure political life, excluding knowledge. I want to know.
Politics, etymologically, refers to the management of the city. To manage the city is to manage people. To manage people is to manage their problems, and people’s problems are economic, social and political in nature. A politician can only truly grasp the problems of the people if he or she has a political vision fueled by a solid political, economic and social ideology. This is what is most lacking in the Ivorian political arena.
There is no ideologically credible political offer. With 13 months to go until the presidential elections in 2020, it is an ideal time for political actors to develop their political programmes that will try to structure national life. The people, I believe, must be demanding. They are the main consumers of political products. They must no longer accept being sold quarrels and political anecdotes. I notice that in Côte d’Ivoire, it is not so much the voters who choose their representatives but rather the political groups and politicians who select their electorate. Too bad!
Politics is a profession. Only those with ideas can exercise it and exercise it well for the benefit of the community
The press must also play its part by prominently featuring politicians who have ideas, who conduct politics with ideas. After three decades of the reign of force and money, 2020 must symbolize the dawn of a new era: the reign of knowledge, of ideas.
Ladies and gentlemen, candidates for the 2020 presidential election, I now invite you to express your opinions on the major issues and challenges facing Ivorian society. What are the societal values you want to promote? National identity, order, security, family? Or rather, diversity, tolerance, cultural liberalism, rights? These are fundamental, existential questions for a nation. No one can claim to govern a large country like Côte d’Ivoire without first reflecting on these issues and introducing them into a political vision.
Does our country’s migration policy jeopardize or enrich national identity? Why has our society become so anxious? What should our new security policy be? It is the answers to these questions that Ivorians need, not who will be the candidate of the Rassemblement des houphouëtistes pour la démocratie et la paix (RHDP), the Front populaire ivoirien (FPI) or the former new forces.
With 13 months to go until the presidential elections in 2020, it is an ideal time for political actors to develop their political programmes that will try to structure national life
What new economic, institutional, ecological or technological models are politicians proposing to offer an optimistic vision for the future? Are our institutions strong enough to meet democratic requirements? Can we validly continue this liberal, capitalist policy in a state without capital? What is our environmental strategy outside of international instruments? Why are our cities always flooded and dirty? Does our ecological policy optimize our agricultural potential? How can we make the most of technological advances to modernize our administration and reduce the difficulty of work? It is the answers to these questions that Ivorians want to know,not political statements to nominate putative candidates for 2020.
In 2020, will we adopt protectionist politics, emphasizing monetary and fiscal sovereignty? Has globalization enriched or impoverished us? Can we compete with multinational organizations in the domestic market? Isn’t our industrial fabric heading towards decline? Should we continue with the CFA franc fifty years after our independence? Do we have the capacity, the human resources to manage a currency rationally? What are the advantages and disadvantages of leaving the franc zone? Is the creation of a regional currency without the influence of the former colonial power economically viable? It is the answers to these questions that make and give the stature of a politician.
After three decades of the reign of force and money, 2020 must symbolize the dawn of a new era: the reign of knowledge, of ideas
On the social level, to increase well-being, are we going to focus on ownership, business, taxation, responsibility? How can we use taxation rationally to encourage business creation, and subsequently new jobs? How can we make our national companies competitive? How can we spark an interest in entrepreneurship among our children leaving school? These are the questions that a politician must ask himself or herself, not how will I deceive or intimidate everyone in order to become president in 2020.
Still at the social level, the question of wages, working conditions, the place of public service in society and the question of social security are important to address. Isn’t our retirement policy obsolete? How can we ensure a better retirement for our fellow citizens? Is the retirement age in line with our budgetary and employment needs? Can our public services continue to operate with the rules adapted to private services? How can we put an end to the privileges granted to state dignitaries for a better distribution of national wealth? What explains the fragility of social infrastructures?
How can we spark an interest in entrepreneurship among our children leaving school? These are the questions that a politician must ask himself or herself, not how will I deceive or intimidate everyone in order to become president in 2020
Is the public procurement code up to date? What are the solutions to end recurring strikes in the public service? Here is a corpus of questions that the men and women who aspire to lead the Ivorians in 2020 must now answer. Can our judicial system guarantee the rule of law? Can we ensure the equality of all before the law and ensure the protection of human rights and freedoms with an understaffed judiciary? How can this be addressed structurally? For 2020, let us put aside strength and money, let us give priority to ideas.
Source photo : oeildafrique.com