Materialism and Commodifcation of Delegacy: A Political Economy of Vote Buying/Selling In 2014 Pdp Governorship Primary in Nasarawa State, Nigeria (Published)
Party politics in Nigeria is essentially a market scenario whereof political power, patronage and votes are objects of economic transaction. Driven by the logic of materialism and opportunism, the average Nigerian politician sees politics as a premium investment as well as an avenue for material accumulation and aggrandizement. Partisan relations in this context are characteristically commoditized in such a manner that passes for buying and selling of electoral patronage and votes. This paper examines this trend with particular reference to the 2014 PDP primary election in Nasarawa State. By way of a purposive survey conducted on a cross-section of delegates to the 2014 PDP primary elections in the State, the paper observes that vote buying/selling played a significant role in determining the outcome of the elections. The paper reveals that most of the delegates were approached with pecuniary offers by agents of political aspirants in a bid to influence their voting choices. Although there was no ample empirical evidence to prove that the delegates were actually compromised in the process, circumstantial evidence suggests that some of the delegates must have voted based on material inducement. The paper thus submits that vote buying/selling is an important determinant of electoral victory in primary elections in Nigeria. More empirical studies are required in other parts of the country to validate the findings of this study.