samson 2

Samson Itodo

For a while a particular demographic of Nigerians have been the dominant participants in the political space in Nigeria, the youths seemed comfortable to play second fiddle in the scheme of things. And for a while, all seemed well in wonderland. Youths being used as political thugs for peanuts etc, had become the norm and to some extent the youth have been at the down burner of the dearth in the political space, as the previous and present governments have little or nothing to offer the youth of Nigeria.

The 2015 elections did many positive things in the psyche of Nigerians in general and the youth in particular. We became more aware of the power of our votes in taking important leadership decisions. Secondly, there was a fresh wave of political ambition amongst the youth, the mantra that ‘youths are the future’ of this country, suddenly made sense. And with it sprung up various youth driven movements, forums and organizations, some are still docile or yet to find their feet, while most have become very active and with very loud voices.

YIAGA (Youth Initiative for Advocacy, Growth and Advancement) is one movement that has been very active. President Buhari signing the Not Too Young To Run Bill into law on 31st May 2018, was a victory for all Nigerian youth. But for Samson Itodo, Executve Director of YIAGA and Convener of the #nottooyoungtorun movement took the celebration a step further by asking for a further reduction in the age limits for political positions in the country. The recent bill reduces age qaulification for President from 40 to 35, Governor from 35 to 30, House of Reps from 30 to 25 and Sate House of Assembly from 30 to 25.

At a press conference held in Abuja the next day 1st June 2018, Samson Itodo announced that there would be a #nottooyoungtorun conference holding in Abuja on the 18th of June 2018. And in that conference there would be a more detailed and clearer direction for the vision and activities of the movement. From the activities of the numerous youth forums, it can be safe to say that the forthcoming 2019 elections would be an interesting one which will see more active participation of Nigerian youth in key political offices.

Reported by Akudo / wakeupafrica360


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