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Separating Politics From Governance

Separating Politics From Governance

Politics and governance are mutually exclusive just like policy formulation and policy implementation. However, the need to separate them constitute a panacea for effective leadership in today's complex societies. It is sometimes argued that while policy making is under the domain of politics and politicians, the implementation of same policies is the sole responsibilities of career administrators.

Frank Goodnow, in his book, '' Politics and Administration'' sees politics as the expression of the will of the state'' and administration as '' execution of that will''

John Pfiffner, in his view, too argued that ''politics must be controlled and confined to its proper sphere, which is the determination, crystallization and declaration of the will of the community'', whereas, administration is the carrying into effect of this will, once it has been made clear by the political processes'' He went further to conclude that politics should stick to policy determining sphere and leave administration to apply its own technical processes, free from the meddling of politicians'’.

We can rightly say that electioneering gimmicks, antics and every strategy adopted by politicians in their quest to control state apparatus, lie in the realm of politics, while the day- to –day running of the government and the implementation of government policies and projects are the functions of administration.

Public office holders, especially state governors, should see politics as simply the quest and struggle to serve the people, a process that should end after elections and administration as a technical functions of career administrators.

This assertion does not seek to advocate the philosophy that public administration should be restricted or reserved to career public administrators. Politicians should note the fact that the morpheme, ''public''   in the word ''public offices'', gives everybody the right to seek and occupy public offices, depending on constitutional prescriptions.

They should remember that while politics ends immediately after election, administration begins immediately. It is undisputed fact that politics sets the tone and the pace for administration, but students and scholars of political science will readily agree that a visible dichotomy exists between them.

So, if the Niger Delta region and indeed, Nigeria must move forward, our state governors must separate politics from administration.

Appointments into sensitive public offices should be handled as an administrative activity. Citing of government projects should rather be done or advised by experts, rather than shared on the table of political interests. State governors should carry everybody along and seek expert advices across board, else our development plan will remain a mirage.  

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