My friend Anderson, got the same job with me in 2003. We were employed as state information Journalists
. We started very well with a lot of promising opportunities.
Seven years down experience, our dreams and expectations began to look elastic and delayed. Anderson began to eye and envy other careers. Those jobs that paid very well became his interest.
Working with the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, became his irresistible choice. He lobbied, applied all strings and used his connections to the full, to get INEC job. He did in August, 2014. Before April, 2015, my friend Anderson had given me up to ten calls expressing his regret and lack of job satisfaction in his new found and cherished job.
REASON; It was tasking with a lot of unnecessary exposure to accidental probes, checks and suspicion.
I know my friend. He is a young man with conscience. Left for the money alone, he would have retired, fully satisfied. But like the Devil’s alternative. ‘HEAD for a HEAD’. When he came visiting, the gist we had made me pity his helplessness.
To those who could gamble with their conscience, it may sound stupid or look like pretext, that he was having issues with such noble and exalted career which many can do anything to have. ‘’A job that constantly pre-disposes one to sudden risks of all sorts’’. Both the voters and the voted constantly look at them with eyes of suspicion. If a politician loses election he blames INEC or its workers for irregularities.
When he wins, he never gives credit to the impartial INEC staff, rather to his popularity.
Same is applicable to the electorates; even the voter who invalidates a voting sheet due to wrong thumb-printing goes home cursing the electoral officer/worker for his ordeal, or for masterminding his candidates’ loss even when his own vote was invalidated or lost ab-initio.
Even those who seduced them to have their way, to no fruition, are normally the first accusers.
I remember vividly the scenario that played out at the collation centre in the last Presidential election where Professor Jega presided.
While President Goodluck Jonathan was busy taking his stock and congratulating his opponent and the now president , Muhammadu Buhari, someone was busy applying a weird strategy to incite illusion minds to crises on the allegation that the Almighty JEGA compromised.
GOD saved the country from that web, and we lived on.
Transparent or not, good effort or not, someone must blame the electoral worker. Sometimes, the tragedy may take extreme dimensions.
The numerous benefits of the electoral worker notwithstanding, it is now clear that he is enmeshed in a dilemma of a problematic career.