Not Too Young To Run leads March to demand Youth Candidacy

Not Too Young To Run Campaigners Distance Movement From Saraki’s Declaration

As part of efforts to promote youth candidacy and democratic party primaries, the Not Too Young To Run movement commenced a series of public town hall meetings with the leadership of political parties and young aspirants to address the challenges faced by young aspirants in securing party tickets. The movement scheduled three town hall meetings with the leadership of the All Progressive Congress (APC); People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and other parties. The first dialogue held today August 30, 2018 in Abuja with the leadership of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). The event had in attendance the Chairman of the party Mr. Uche Secondus; Senator Bukola Saraki, Hon. Udeh Okoye, National Youth Leader of the party. The event also was attended by young aspirants registered under the Ready To Run platform.

The young aspirants advocated for a reduction in the cost of party nomination forms and requested the party to uphold internal democracy in the conduct of party primaries. In his response, the Chairman of the PDP assured the young aspirants of their support for youth candidacy in the forthcoming primaries.

Whilst addressing participants at the town hall, Senator Saraki declared his intention to run for the office of the President in the 2019 elections. The movement wishes to express its disappointment with Senator Saraki for usurping a platform designed for young aspirants to dialogue with party leadership to advance his political ambition. We strongly condemn this act by the President of the Senate and dissociate ourselves from this political move.

As noted earlier, the movement reaffirms its identity as a non-partisan citizen led movement dedicated to the defense of democracy, political inclusion and transformative leadership. The movement restates its commitment to sustain its engagement with political parties to ensure youth candidacy and democratic party primaries.

Signed.

Not Too Young To Run Movement

STATEMENT BY NOT TOO YOUNG TO RUN MOVEMENT ON PUBLIC DIALOGUE SERIES WITH POLITICAL PARTIES ON YOUTH CANDIDACY AND PARTY PRIMARIES

Ladies and gentlemen of the press,

On August 8, 2018, the Not Too Young To Run Movement hosted a National Day of Action on Youth Candidacy and Democratic Party Primaries across the 36 states of the country and the FCT. The National Day of Action organized a march to the National and state offices of political parties as they prepare to hold primary elections to select candidates for the 2019 general elections.

The movement engaged all the registered political parties to make the following demands;

  1. That Political parties reserve party tickets for young men and women with character, capacity and competence.
  2. That political parties prescribe and enforce spending limits for party nomination fees and charges. The cost for nomination of candidates should not exceed;
  • House of Assembly Aspirant – N200,000
  • House of Representatives Aspirant – N400,000
  • Senatorial Aspirant – N600,000
  • Governorship Aspirant – N1,000,000
  • Presidential Aspirant – N2,000,000
  1. That Political parties should adopt open, transparent and direct party primaries in the candidate selection process for the 2019 elections

Despite the commitments from the leadership of the various political parties at the National and state level, the Movement notes with concern the announcement on the cost of nomination forms by various parties which presents a major impediment to youth participation in politics. More worrisome is the tactics deployed by some state governors to thwart the political aspirations of young aspirants. In some states, nomination forms are sold to aspirants after approval has been given by the governor of the state. In other words, party executives cannot sell nomination forms to young aspirants until the approval of the Governor is sought and secured. This is undemocratic and dictatorial in every respect.

The Movement also commends parties that have taken intentional steps to accede to the demands of the Movement and have ensured that the cost of nomination forms is not a hindrance to youth candidacy within their political parties. Notable amongst them is the United Progressive Party (UPP) and Young Progressive Party (YPP).

We urge the national leadership of political parties to caution state leaders of the parties against subverting party guidelines in the candidate selection process. State governors should desist from undermining the integrity of the candidate selection process through imposition of candidates and intimidation of young aspirants. Parties should ensure guidelines for party primaries are widely publicized to promote participation and accountability.

As part of efforts to further operationalize the Not Too Young To Run act in the 2019 elections, the Not Too Young To Run movement will host a Public Dialogue Series with Political parties on Youth Candidacy and Party Primaries. The goal of the public engagement series is to provide a platform for young aspirants registered under the Ready To Run platform to engage with party leaders on emerging threats to youth candidacy in the build-up to the commencement of party primaries. The dialogue is an opportunity for party leaders to harvest youth inputs as well as address some concerns relating to the candidate selection process in parties. Parties will utilize the platform to share policies/intentional steps they are taking to ensure democratic primaries as well as the emergence young women, men and PWDs get party tickets.

The Public Dialogue Series will also provide an opportunity for the leadership of the parties to engage with young aspirants on youth candidacy and democratic party primaries in the 2019 elections. The Dialogue will also create a platform for party leaders to harvest youth inputs as well as address some concerns relating to the candidate selection process in parties and create a safe space for parties to share policy actions aimed at safeguarding the emergence young women and men and PWDs in the political party as well as facilitate intergenerational dialogue on leadership, politics and representation.

The movement appreciates the leadership of the various political parties that have reserved party tickets for young men and women with character, capacity and competence; prescribed and enforced spending limits for party nomination fees and charges; as well as parties that have adopted open, transparent and direct party primaries in the candidate selection process for the 2019 elections.

We thank all the young organizers across the country who have remained resolute and have constantly engaged with their stakeholders to ensure the success of the Not Too Young To Run Movement, we thank the media, civil society, and our partners for the solidarity and support.

One Shared Value, One Shared Goal, #NOTTOOYOUNGTORUN

Our Shared Value, Our Shared Goal, #NOTTOOYOUNGTORUN

YouthVotesCount Campus Outreach Port Harcourt

AY, Banky W, Uti, BasketMouth, Waje, Light Up Uniport as INEC, YIAGA AFRICA Take Voter Education to South-South

Ebitimi Banigo Auditorium of the University of Port Harcourt was filled to the brim as over 2000 students turned up for the YouthVotesCount Campus Outreach program for South-South along with Star Celebrities, Ayo Makun; AY, Banky Wellingnton; Banky W, Waje and Bright Okpocha, also known as BasketMouth. It was an electric atmosphere with celebrities as students of the University commit to get registered, Vote and defend their votes in a peaceful manner as the 2019 elections approaches.

Having hosted the program in the University of Abuja, University of Lagos, Bayero University, Kano, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in collaboration with YIAGA AFRICA, European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES) and the European Union in Nigeria, took the Voter education campaign to University of Port Harcourt. During the event on Monday, INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu said, although it’s just 172 days to the first voting in the 2019 General Elections, the commission started its preparation long ago with Continuous Voters Registration and distribution of Permanent Voters Card.

According to the Chairman who was represented by National Commissioner, Prince Adedeji Soyebi said, for every election conducted by the commission, over 600,000 young people are being utilized. Prince Soyebi revealed that come 2019, INEC will engage over 1million youths in various capacities for the successful conduct of the general elections saying young people are the nucleus of elections. He however decried that the huge percentage of young people on the voter register doesn’t reflect representation in the political process and decision making.

Panelist Celebrities at Youth Vote Count Port Harcourt

Prince Soyebi also said, a lot of underage voters have been expunged from the voter register.  He said Nigerians should always draw attention of the commission during display claims and objections of Voter register on issues relating to underage voters and foreigners on the voter register.

Also speaking during the outreach program, INEC head of Voter education, Barrister Oluwale Osaze Uzi said bad leaders are elected by good people who don’t vote as he urges students to shun violence during election.

The celebrities on parade also took turns to speak on the role of young people in the electoral process as they encouraged the students to get registered, get their Permanent Voters Card and vote come election day. According the stars, the nation has remained backward because of young people’s apathy towards electoral process and politics in Nigeria.

They further urged young not to allow themselves to be manipulated and used by politicians as Uti said, Politicians lose their powers if young people refuse to be manipulated and used for electoral violence.  According to Banky W, we have up 200million Nigerians and at least about 83 million Registered Voters but unfortunately only 15 million Votes was required to win the Presidential election in 2015 which is barely 10% of the entire population.

Osun 2018: 48 parties, candidates vie for governorship (FULL LIST)

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has presented the names of 48 political parties cleared to contest for September 22 governorship election in Osun State.

The State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Segun Agbaje, said majority of the non-sensitive materials that would be used for the conduct of the election have been received from the electoral commission, INEC headquarters, Abuja; and distributed to INEC offices across the state.

Although there are 48 parties and thus 48 governorship candidates, about five of them are expected to be the major contenders. These are a former secretary to the state government, Fatai Akinbade of the ADC; immediate past secretary to the state government, Moshood Adeoti of the ADP; the candidate of the governing APC, Adegboyega Oyetola; a senator, Ademola Adeleke of the PDP; and a former senator, Iyiola Omisore of the SDP.

The winner will succeed outgoing governor, Rauf Aregbesola of the APC.

The names of the parties and their candidates as presented by INEC are as follows:

1. Party – Accord
Governor – Julius Olapade Okunola
Deputy Governor – Azeez Kayode Jimoh

2. Party – AA
Governor – Ogunmodede Adeloye
Deputy Governor – Adepoju Timothy Adetunji

3. Party – ABP
Governor – Oludare Timothy Akinola
Deputy Governor – Halimat Bunmi Ibrahim

4. Party – ACD
Governor – Genga Afeni
Deputy Governor – Oni Esther Oluwatoyin

5. Party – ACPN
Governor – Rufai Adebisi Mujidat
Deputy Governor – Agboola Peter Oluremi

6. Party – AD
Governor – James Olugbenga Akintola
Deputy Governor – Abdulhakeem Oyeniyi Bello

7. Party – ADC
Governor – Fatai Akinade Akinbade
Deputy Governor – Arowolo Oladele

8. Party – ADP
Governor – Adeoti Moshood Olalekan
Deputy Governor – Durotoye Adeolu Akinbola

9. Party – AGA
Governor – Kehinde Olufemi Lawrence
Deputy Governor – Lawal Oluseyi Afusat

10. Party – AGAP
Governor – Adejola Adebayo Rufus
Deputy Governor – Adebayo Adewale Olaolu

11. Party – ANRP
Governor – Alarape Babatunde A.
Deputy Governor – Adelu Ayoade David

12. Party – APA
Governor – Adeleke Adesoji M.A
Deputy Governor – Agbonmagbe Tosin Omowumi

13. Party – APC
Governor – Adegboyega Isiaka Oyetola
Deputy Governor – Benedict Olugboyega Alabi

14. Party – APGA
Governor – Oluwatoki Adetokunbo Adedayo A.
Deputy Governor – Adefila Mary Olaitan (Nee Olaleke)

15. Party – APP
Governor – Ekundayo Ademola Precious
Deputy Governor – Ojo Olugbenga Samuel

16. Party – BNPP
Governor – Olapade Olajide Victor
Deputy Governor – Dunmade Adejoke Wuraola

17. Party – C4C
Governor –Ilori Titus Oluwafemi
Deputy Governor – Alabi Temitayo Kadijat

18. Party – DA
Governor – Mutiu Abiodun Ibrahim
Deputy Governor – Fafioye Hammed Abiodun

19. Party – DPC
Governor – Aderemi Aree
Deputy Governor – Onitayo Yemisi Mary

20. Party – DPP
Governor – Solomon Ayodeji Oni
Deputy Governor – Issa Ademola Aderibigbe

21. Party – FJP
Governor – Babatunde Salako Joseph
Deputy Governor – Onifade Saheed Alade

22. Party – GDPN
Governor – Adetipe Adebodun Abiola
Deputy Governor – Ajiboye Funke

23. Party – GPN
Governor – Rafiu Shehu Anifowose
Deputy Governor – Oluwatoyin Adebayo

24. Party – HDP
Governor – Adedoyin Adegoke Joshua Oluwole
Deputy Governor – Olawale Adesoye Adewumi

25. Party – KP
Governor – Fabiyi Oluseyi Olubunmi
Deputy Governor – Ibrahim Adekunle Akande

26. Party – LP
Governor – Babatunde Olaniyi Loye
Deputy Governor – Aderonke Adebayor Jabar

27. Party – MMN
Governor – Raphael A. Feranmi
Deputy Governor – Ariyo Sunday Sina

28. Party – MPN
Governor – Lawal Ganiyu Akanfe
Deputy Governor – Idowu Kayode Olusegun

29. Party – NCP
Governor – Kamarudeen Kalemi Abiodun
Deputy Governor – Lawal Temitope Serifat

30. Party – NPC
Governor – Olaniyi Anthony Fadahunsi
Deputy Governor – Abdulrasheed Afusat Olanike

31. Party – NEPP
Governor – Jegede Hannah Taiwo
Deputy Governor – Rebecca Adeleke Oladepo

32. Party – NNPP
Governor – Adefare Segun Adegoke
Deputy Governor – Adeyeye Nurudeen Adeyemi

33. Party – PANDEL
Governor – Adebayo Rasheedat
Deputy Governor – Ajibola Fatimat

34. Party – PDC
Governor – Kolawole Rafiu Ojonla
Deputy Governor – Oladapo Deborah Oluwatoyin

35. Party – PDP
Governor – Ademola Nirudeen Adeleke
Deputy Governor – Albert A. Adeogun

36. Party – PPA
Governor – Adedokun Musbau Olalekan
Deputy Governor – Ibrahim Bukola

37. Party – PPC
Governor – Ifeolu Kehinde Adewumi
Deputy Governor – Sunday Makinde Babawale

38. Party – PPN
Governor – Akintunde Adesoji
Deputy Governor – Akanmu Saheed Abiodun

39. Party – PRP
Governor –Badmus Tajudeen Adefola
Deputy Governor – Olajire Gbolahan

40. Party – PT
Governor – Adegboyega Aderemi
Deputy Governor – Usman Omobolaji Taofeek

41. Party – RP
Governor – Ayodele Mercy Tosin
Deputy Governor – Adejumo Mukaila

42. Party – SDP
Governor – Iyiola Omisore
Deputy Governor – Lawal Azeez Olayemi

43. Party – SNP
Governor – Ayoade Ezekiel Adegboyega
Deputy Governor – Omolade Anike Adebayo

44. Party – SPN
Governor – Alfred Adegoke
Deputy Governor – Lameed Gafar

45. Party – UPN
Governor – Adediji Olanrewaju Adewuyi
Deputy Governor – Alabi Ola-Olu Adeniyi

46. Party – UPP
Governor – Odutade Olagunju Adesanya
Deputy Governor – Karonwi Festus Olamilekan

47. Party – YDP
Governor – Adebayo Adeolu Elisha
Deputy Governor – Aleem Atinuke

48. Party – YPP
Governor – Adetunji Olubunmi Omotayo
Deputy Governor – Salawu Kareem Adeniyi

Source: Premium Times

SANs dodging taxes, impeding anti-graft war – Magu

Mr Ibrahim Magu, the acting Chairman of the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Monday, listed how some Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) have been frustrating the battle against corruption, accusing many of them of refusal to pay taxes from the humongous fees they received from clients.

The EFCC boss said this in a message to lawyers entitled: “Need for ethical reforms as NBA conference begins.”

Magu said: “As lawyers converge on Abuja for the Annual General Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, I wish to seize the opportunity of this momentous occasion to felicitate with all our learned friends who are undoubtedly among the most important stakeholders in our country’s fight against corruption…

“We are very worried that on a number of occasions, some members of the NBA, have elected to side with those who do not want the good of Nigeria.

“I believe it is part of the professional ethical code of lawyers to ask questions as to the source of their clients’ wealth…

“It is amazing that a senior lawyer can accept professional fees of N1.7 Billion Naira from a politician without scruples! The same lawyer with a turnover ofN3, 765,414,995.24 only paid valued added tax of N7, 051,928.24.

“The N300million cash payment which the senior lawyer received from a South South state government in an election petition matter in 2016 was never captured in his tax submissions to the Federal Inland Revenue Service.

“Yet when he got wind of EFCC investigation he was quick to take advantage of the VAIDS window as cover to shield himself from the Commission’s dragnet.

“Another senior lawyer who is quick to advertise himself as the nemesis of the EFCC, has turnover of over N5.1billion with an assessed total tax liability of over a billion Naira between 2010 and 2017. Sadly, he merely declared a meager N8million as gross earnings for 2014 and 2015, and N10million for 2016.

“I can go on and on. The catalogue of brazen infractions by senior lawyers that borders on criminality is legion. The tragedy is that these so called smart senior lawyers are supposed to be role models for the young lawyers.

“Young lawyers who worry about their future and the future of the noble profession in Nigeria must rise today and demand the cleansing of the mercantilist tendencies of some of the learned silks.

“Today, I called on members of the Bar to spare some moments to reflect deeply on the ethical stock of the profession. Clearly, the time has come for members of the Bar to set new benchmarks for ethical conduct by members while drawing new inspiration to whip erring members in line.

“The NBA must strengthen its disciplinary mechanism and ensure that disciplinary measures are applied to every errant member no matter how highly placed. This will help to rid the profession of bad eggs and secure its credibility.

“It is bad enough that our people are at the mercy of public officers who abuse our common patrimony for personal gain, it is worse to see lawyers who should rise above the rot become complicit in the mindless thievery.

“I expect members of the bar to frown at many of the shenanigans that still go on in court, especially the tendency by some very senior members of the profession to abuse the processes of court through frivolous applications intended to frustrate trial and outright intimidation of judges.

“Despite these shortcomings, the EFCC which I represent is still indebted to lawyers for the role they have played in our modest achievements over the past few years.

“Without the commitment and dedication of some members of the Bar, the Commission would not have secured a total of 158 convictions so far this year and 189 last years.

“Finally, I wish to leave members of the NBA with the wise words of our dear President His Excellency President Muhammadu Buhari, that ‘if we don’t kill corruption, corruption will kill us’.

“I once again invite you all to partner with the EFCC and the generality of Nigerians in the fight against corruption.”

Source: Todayng

EFCC slams SAN for receiving N2 billion legal fee, another with N5.1 billion turnover

The Acting Chairman of the Economic Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu, has accused some Senior Advocates of Nigeria of frustrating the country’s anti-corruption war for pecuniary gains.

Magu levelled the accusations in an article he wrote as the Nigeria Bar Association started its Annual General Conference.

He said the senior lawyers knowingly supply the technical know-how and help in the dispersal of the proceeds of crime.

Magu, who did not name the SANs, said one of them received N1.7 billion in legal fees from a corrupt politician.

He said the same SAN received N300 million from a governor in the South South as legal fees for an election petition case and failed to pay tax.

He, however, took advantage of the Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme when he realised he was under probe.

Magu said: “It is personally disheartening to see lawyers who invest their talents and expertise in advancing the cause of corrupt politicians and public officials. It is amazing that a senior lawyer can accept professional fees of N1.7 billion from a politician without scruples!

“The same lawyer with a turnover of N3,765,414,995.24 only paid valued added tax of N7,051,928.24. The N300m cash payment which the senior lawyer received from a South-South state government in an election petition matter in 2016 was never captured in his tax submissions to the Federal Inland Revenue Service.

“Yet when he got wind of EFCC investigation, he was quick to take advantage of the VAIDS window as cover to shield himself from the commission’s dragnet.”

On the SAN with turnover of N5.1 billion, Magu wrote: “Another senior lawyer who is quick to advertise himself as the nemesis of the EFCC, has a turnover of over N5.1 billion with an assessed total tax liability of over a billion naira between 2010 and 2017. Sadly, he merely declared a meagre N8m as gross earnings for 2014 and 2015, and N10 million for 2016.”

Source: Todayng

Nigeria Should Be $3tn Economy, Says Kenyan Anti-corruption Czar

A former head of the Kenya Anti-corruption Commission and renowned law scholar, Prof. Patrick Otieno Lumumba, has decried the poor performance of Nigeria in different spheres of development in spite of her abundant human and material resources, declaring that the country should be an economy with a $3 trillion gross domestic product (GDP) and not the current $500 billion.

He berated the political elite for holding the vastly-endowed country down, adding that as long as the country fails to provide the compass for Africa’s greatness, the continent would continue to lag behind.

Lumumba spoke in a keynote address during a two-day forum of the Summit of The Alternatives (SOTA), in Abuja.
SOTA is a collaborative effort of different non-governmental groups, including the Red Card Movement, Centre for Democracy and Development, Yiaga Africa, Nigeria First Project, BudgIT, EiE Nigeria and passionate citizens under the slogan of “Framing the New Nigeria of our Dream.”

Lumumba said he was in agreement with the late Nigerian author, Prof. Chinua Achebe’s book, ‘The Trouble with Nigeria’, which laid the country’s problem squarely on leadership.

The prominent law professor said: “Chinua Achebe in his book, ‘The Trouble With Nigeria’, explained that the problem of Nigeria is simply that of leadership.

“I remember so vividly in 1963 when African leaders assembled in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. They were as passionate as they were correct. They were all envied in the early days…They all made sense.

“When one listened to Nnamdi Azikiwe, he made sense. When one listened to Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, he made sense. When one listened to the Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Ahmadu Bello, he made sense. A lot of other African leaders made sense.
“We soon began to see a new breed of coup d’état leaders; the men in arms in the political arena. That was when the rain started to beat us as a country.

“Nigeria occupies such an important place not only in Africa, but in the world.

Nigeria is a leader when it comes to producing some of the greatest thinkers in Africa.

“What continues to hold Nigeria down are the political elites; the politics of money. They should realise that when they lead Nigeria, they are also leading Africa.

“When Nigeria sneezes, Africa catches a cold. Nigeria should realise that she should be the political Mecca where African leaders pay pilgrimage.

“Nigeria must improve agriculture and health, so that our president does not sojourn abroad for medical tourism.
“Nigeria is blessed with everything you can think of, but leadership. Nigeria has showed its leadership position in the African region through various peace keeping operations in Liberia and Sierra Leone; name it. Nigeria is the only missing link to Africa’s success.

‘Nigeria’s leadership is the missing link in Africa’s greatness.”
Lumumba noted that be it in the field of medicine, engineering, science and technology, film and cinematography, sports, academia and other fields of human endeavour, Nigeria has continued to produce the leading lights globally.
But he lamented that the missing link in galvanising the potential for Nigeria and by extension, Africa’s greatness, was leadership. Lumumba regretted that Nigerian leaders at all levels had appropriated public leadership for personal gains, and reminded them that a position of leadership is that of trusteeship.

He urged Nigerian leaders to resolve that time had come to provide purposeful and selfless leadership, adding that “Nigeria ought to be Africa on microcosm,” he added.

Lumumba therefore urged the Nigerian president and other members of the executive arm, the National Assembly, and others in leadership positions to liberate themselves from the shackles of what he described as ‘short-termism’ in order to maximise Nigeria’s potential for the nation’s arrested greatness.

In her welcome address, the convener of the Red Card Movement, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili harped on the need for a new Nigeria, and the economic implication of having a visionary leadership, with character, competence and capacity.

Source: This Day

Idris Muhammed

Not Too Young To Run: Youths and Political Paradigm shift – Idris Muhammed

Going by recent events especially regarding the participation of young people in Politics in Nigeria, the words of Attahiru Jega comes to mind. The former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in 2014 said, “Nigeria has capable youths that could chart the course for a great nation but the challenge is that they have been abandoned. There is a lot to give us concern as a nation about the way our country is being run, because we have able and capable young men and women out there. All they need is the opportunity to contribute to the development of this country.”

The above quotation by Prof. Attahiru Jega, former INEC Chairman aptly depicts the unsavory situation Nigerian youths find themselves today despite their brilliance and innate capabilities, they lack opportunities to realize their God-given talents and potentials. Certain institutional encumbrances and structural imbalance in the polity have further denied them the opportunity to fully participate in democracy and contribute their quota to nation building. This is why they constitute the bulk of immigrants who throng to Europe crossing the hazardous Sahara desert and the risky Mediterranean sea in search of the proverbial golden fleece.

However, there is light at the end of the tunnel, as President Muhammadu Buhari has recently signed the ‘Not Too Young to Rule Bill into law that will enable young people to contest elective positions. The Act was a campaign started in 2016 by YIAGA AFRICA with the aim of advocating inclusion of young people in democratic governance.

For years, Nigerian youths were denied access to power through democratic participation while their counterpart in developed countries like France and Canada youths have been given bright chance to attain the highest political position. For example, President Macron of France is below the age of 40 while in Nigeria, youths are still struggling to find their feet in terms of getting themselves employed in a public or private establishment. Most of the time, their vibrancy will die before they economically start their life of independence.

Giving the socio-economic living condition in Nigeria, Nigerian youths will hardly have any meaningful achievement in their life until they reach middle age status. In addition to that what hinders them from active political participation is money politics, Godfatherism to maintain the status quo. The worst case may present a situation of graduates today who are already in their 30s at the point of graduation and upon times they spent up to ten years before securing a job and begin to think on how to settle down. The current situation whereby the youths lack opportunity to start early in life effectively.

Furthermore, attaining the leadership positions is structured to always favour the ruling elite and modern bourgeois who double as shakers and movers of political transition. There is no level playing ground for people from poor background to seek elective offices. Though the Not Too Young to Run constitution is a welcome development in the atmosphere of Nigeria and Africa at large. It is so significant looking at how African leaders have a history of throne-tightening. This was seen in Libya, Zimbabwe, Kenya, and Cameroon among others.

For that the stake holders need to do more to provide conducive environment for political equal participation for Nigerian youths particularly encourage women. Government at all levels and other critical institution like INEC, National Orientation Agency (NOA) and religious leaders should make conscious effort de-emphasize the role of money politics and Godfatherism in our democratic culture in particular the electorates should be properly educated on democratic norms and values in such a way that they will begin to hold their leaders accountable and insist in good governance, transparency and accountability rather than accepting chromes from the public office holders. There should be also a deliberate attempt to affect a paradigm shift in leadership recruitment pattern by selecting youths who have demonstrated uncommon capabilities in their areas of specialization for effective leadership and mentorship.

Lastly, since Nigerian youths constituted a significant amount in the Nigerian population, they are the main prime movers in term campaign and party activities, they should not vote any party that denied a youth candidate particularly women to contest in the fourth coming 2019 general elections in Nigeria. It is noteworthy to re-emphasize that, the act not too young to rule will remain a mirage until the above prescriptions are fully implemented.

Idris Mohammed is a Youth Advocate and Program Officer Watching The Vote YIAGA Africa, Abuja.

You can reach him via

Phone: 07063424263

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @idpyar

YIAGA AFRICA’s BounceCorruption Calls on Anti-Corruption Advocates to Demand Youth Candidacy, Democratic Party Primaries

As we prepare towards the National Day of Action (on youth candidacy and Democratic Party primaries) scheduled for 8th August, 2018 targeted at political parties across each state of the federation, YIAGA Africa’s #BounceCorruption team wishes to implore all its anti-corruption advocates, partners and ambassadors in the various states to come out en masse in support of this affirmative action.

As a group, we believe that the non-inclusion of youth in the governance process – as is evident in most political party’s structure forestalls good and accountable governance on a large scale. Given that the success of the anti-corruption movement hinges on good and accountable governance at all levels, this therefore means that for the tenets of Democracy to be actualized, it must reflect inclusiveness at its very core: this avails the populace a multiplicity of options where they choose representatives at all levels of governance. This cannot be achieved when there are deliberate and coordinated attempts perpetuated by some political actors and party leadership to shut out youths (who account for about 67% of the population) by making nomination forms for primaries expensive to say the least among other factors.

As a Nation, we cannot win the anticorruption war without youth involvement in the highest levels of governance. We must therefore resist every narrative that seeks to undermine the importance and vibrancy of youths; we must with our numbers and our inherent abilities challenge and if need be, frustrate every attempt to shut the youth out of the political process by the unrealistic preconditions presented by most political parties in running for office. We must stand firm and send out clear messages to the political class and party’s hierarchy regarding our readiness to not just be involved in governance, but to also lead the campaign to rid our country of corruption that has bedeviled the country overtime with the use of countless antics.

To us, if democracy is defined by inclusion, then every attempt by any means to either deprive the most populated sector of the society of this opportunity to actively participate or frustrate their inclusion in the process is in itself  corrupt, as such a move is in blatant disregard of the very core of democracy.

The National day of Action will be a day to send out one message in one voice to political parties as they get set to conduct party primaries; that we are ready in our numbers to resist and vote out parties that are elusive to youth inclusiveness. We therefore urge all our #BounceCorruption advocates not to relent in efforts to make this happen. We urge you therefore to take opportunity of the window provided by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to register and get your PVC within the stipulated date as announced by INEC.

To be able to elect youths and leaders capable of accountable and corrupt-free governance, the importance of the thumbprint through our PVC can never be overestimated.

Come one, come all! And together, let’s unite and #BounceCorruption out of Nigeria.

Click here  here to sign up as a Bounce Corruption Crusader in your locality now!

 

Signed

Samson Itodo

Executive Director

Again, Buhari Declines Assent to Electoral Act Amendment Bill

President Muhammadu Buhari has again vetoed the Electoral Act Amendment Bill 2018, citing drafting issues, which he said might affect the interpretation and application of the principal act.

According to the president in separate communications to the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, and the Speaker of House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, cited by THISDAY, some of the provisions of the bill would adversely affect the operations of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The president was, however, vague about the offensive provisions even as the veto meant a rejection of the use of electronic card readers for the conduct of the 2019 general election, which many political analysts said would make the nation’s electoral process cleaner.

This is the second time the president would be vetoing alterations to the electoral law.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang, however, confirmed to THISDAY on phone last night that his boss declined assent to the second amendment bill for stated reasons, adding, however, that a third bill on the same subject that was passed on July 24, 2018, was pending before the president.
“I will make a clear statement on it tomorrow,” he said.

Buhari had in March this year rejected the amendment to the electoral law, which altered the sequence of elections placing the National Assembly election first, followed by presidential election while governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections would hold last.
“Section 25 of the principal act, may infringe upon the constitutionally guaranteed discretion of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to organise, undertake and supervise elections provided in Section 15(A) of the third statue to the Constitution;” he had said.
The Court of Appeal, however, ruled earlier in the month that the National Assembly has constitutional powers to order the sequence of election.

Ironically, the rejection of the bill would now render useless and inapplicable, the president’s provisioning for purchase and upgrading of new electronic card readers for the INEC as part of the N242 billion 2019 election budget.
The Supreme Court had ruled that while the card reader and other electronic devise would enhance the transparency of the electoral system, it was, however, not part of the electoral law.

It was in an attempt to legalise the devise that the federal legislature decided to codify and include it in the electoral law.
“We see this as not only disingenuous but hypocritical for a president who won election following introduction of card readers but has now turned around to reject it. What is he (Buhari) afraid of,” a ranking lawmaker said out of frustration Monday.

“Remember, he rejected the first bill because of sequence of election. We then decided to remove it from the bill and all other concerns the president raised, and we sent the bill with the hope that he will sign it since these concerns have been addressed,” he said.

Appeal Court Halts Arrest of INEC Chairman

In a related development, the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division has ordered a stay of execution of the warrant of arrest on Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmoud Yakubu, pending the determination of his appeal.
Justice Stephen Pam of the Federal High Court in Abuja, had on August 1, 2018, ordered for the arrest of Yakubu, following his absence in court on three different occasions, to show cause why he should not be committed to prison over his alleged disobedience to the order of the court.

Justice Pam, also in a short ruling on August 8, reaffirmed the order, when Yakubu on the last adjourned date failed to show up.
His counsel, Chief Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN), had informed the court that Yakubu was not in court as a result of the appeals he filed at the appellate court challenging the court’s jurisdiction to entertain the contempt charge, the legality of the charge as well as the arrest order.

The INEC chief in the notice of appeal claimed that Justice Pam acted in bad faith in the issuance of the arrest order because he had already filed a pending appeal against the order and the attention of the judge drawn to the appeal.

When the matter came up yesterday, counsel to the INEC chief, told the court that he had filed an application challenging the judgment of the lower court as well as its jurisdiction to hear the matter, adding that the application was supported by a further affidavit dated August 10, praying for the appellate court to make five orders in favour of his client.
Awomolo said if the appeal was not heard by the time the court would be sitting in September, his client would have been sent to prison, adding that the lower court was bent on sending Yakubu to jail.

However, counsel to the respondents, Mr. Goddy Uche (SAN), insisted that the trial was yet to reach the stage where Yakubu could be jailed, adding that what the trial court was asking for was for the INEC chief to appear in court to show cause why he should not be committed to prison.
He said the trial judge had been unable to deliver his ruling on the contempt charge because of Yakubu’s continued absence in court.

However, the trial could not proceed further, following the court’s decision to avoid going into the substantive matter.
The three-man panel of the court of appeal, presided over by Justice Abdu Aboki, held that it would be better for the court to take the appeal and the substantive suit together.

The court in the meantime then ordered for a stay of execution of the warrant of arrest on Yakubu as well as a stay of proceedings of the matter at the trial court.
The court in a short ruling held that hearing of the appeal could not go on without delving into the main suit, adding that parties were yet to file their brief of argument.
The matter was, therefore, adjourned till September 17, 2018 for the hearing of the appeal and the substantive suit.

Source: This Day