Grassroots Mobilization And The Making Of Change

By Vena Ikem
By Vena Ikem
Throughout history, social change has always been resisted by the status quo for obvious reasons. No one who is in charge wants to leave his comfort zone. Conversely no one who feels the pinch of discomfort wants to endure it longer than necessary. The two opposite forces inevitably create change. Don’t you feel the pinch?

Sometimes change creeps in on us unnoticed. Sometimes it comes like a thunderbolt. Revolutionary. Like the invention of the wheel. Like the invention of the Internet.

However it comes, it’s impact is usually great. And the old gives way to the new. Man’s quest for change is inborn and part of his natural instinct.

Resistance to change at the very worst is symptomatic of lack of vision or at best the limitation of it. Imagine life without a car! Without an aeroplane. Yet, in 1897, before the invention of a car, a legislator in the US Congress opposed the allocation of resources ( aka appropriation) to the United States Patent office because according to him “everything that needed to be invented had already been invented”! Such is the limitation of those who lack vision, who resist social change.

Political change is a form of social change. It is one of the most potent change indicators that can either limit, stifle or galvanise societal change. It could be as revolutionary as a coup,the Arab springs or as subtle as the election of Obama as the first black president of the US.

In all situations it takes the deliberate mobilisation of people to achieve. Where the opportunity provides for peaceful change like in elections it is mandatory for all men and women of goodwill who have come to the realisation that change is needed to go out, or speak up or make some effort within their capacity, however limited towards the realisation of that needed change. Otherwise like it has been said, if wishes were horses, beggars would ride! Change does not come by wishing. It comes by acting.

It has become clear that Cross River State people desire a change from the status quo of its leadership and the way we have become accustomed to selecting our leaders. From Bakassi to Obanlikwu, this is palpable.

The 2015 election will provide us this opportunity and we must embrace it. The message that says we cannot defeat certain elements because they have become too entrenched is a message of conservatives. Change resistant agents. We can and we are poised to. The key is grassroots mobilisation.

I want to appreciate the tremendous work already accomplished by the various voluntary support groups for the Goddy Jedy Agba Campaign. Your sacrifice will not be in vain. We must remain focused and committed to this cause. Failure is not an option for us. Only lilliputians are coming after us!

Those who look forward to the usual underhand tactics will be disappointed. Keep mobilising so that the process will be adequately policed by the people such that we can effect the “one man, one vote” mantra of GEJ even here in Cross River State.

Throughout history, no power has been more potent than the Power of The People! I can see the people rising. I can hear the sound of victory already.

*The views expressed are those of the author.

© 2014, Admin. All rights reserved.

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