Politicians divide youths along party, tribal lines to reduce their strength —Group

A youth-focused group, National Youth Democratic Assembly (NYDA) has decried how youths allow themselves to be divided along political party, tribal and religious lines, creating division among their ranks.

The group at its inaugural stakeholders meeting on Saturday held in Abuja, identified such division of Nigerian youth as a challenge to national development.

The NYDA therefore said it had taken it upon itself to rewrite the situation, and to facilitate structured dialogue among young people from different sectors in Nigeria on how to radically redefine the role of young people through political, economic and social discourses.

“Very unfortunately, the Nigerian youths are divided by parties, tribal line, regional cracks and many a time, religious fanatics. We can categorically say that these cracks are generated by political elites as a way of dividing the strength of the youths by misaligning their focus, sidelining them from the youths national policy implementation,” the president of the assembly, Henry Chinaemere Nwaiwu, asserted.

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Nwaiwu called upon Nigerian leaders to leave the youths out of their dirty businesses of election rigging, snatching of ballot papers and the use of social media to encourage hate speech among candidates and their followers, advocating for free, fair and credible elections come the 2023 general elections.

He also reminded the Independent National Electoral commission (INEC) Chairman, Professor Mahmoud Yakubu, that the world is “hopeful on him to give the best and most credible election,” in Nigeria’s history, appealing that the commission revisits the high costs of forms for political positions to give youths a fair chance to participate in governance.

“There is need to allow the youths decide their fate ahead of 2023 election by electing the best candidates of their choice who will revamp the bad situation of this nation,” Nwaiwu stressed, hoping the loss of lives that have heavily characterised elections in Nigeria and sister African countries like Sudan, Burkina Faso and Rwanda would not recur in 2023.

However, the NYDA identified her responsibility and its enormity, maintaining that history will never forgive the current crop of Nigerian youths if they ignore their responsibility to effect the necessary changes in the country.

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