Kingsley Moghalu, a former presidential candidate in the 2019 general elections, has advised youth in the Nigeria to join politics.
Standing in solidarity with the youth in their calls for the end of police brutality and bad governance in the country, the former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, also decried the apparent impotence of Nigerian security agencies in the face of killer herdsmen and bandits and their quick response to quash peaceful protests.
The economist, however, pointed out that the #EndSARS protests, which Ordinarily represent a welcome awakening of Nigerian youth against bad governance, will not be enough to solve the problem of bad governance in the country.
He said that the best protest against underperforming governments in a democratic setting is the one at the ballot box, using the Permanent Voters Card (PVC).
In a statement he personally signed and made available to reporters in Abuja at the weekend, Moghalu noted that what Nigerians want at this point in time is a better governed country that creates real opportunities for our youth, who make up 65 percent of it’s population of 200 million.
The former Deputy CBN Governor said that the future of Nigeria is bleak if the current trends of rising poverty, low-skilled youth, a dysfunctional education system, and high youth unemployment are not reversed.
“These also are aspects of our fundamental dignity that the #EndSARS protests seek to assert. Only an active and structural engagement with democratic politics by Nigerian youth can achieve the goals of #EndSARS. Protest simply isn’t enough,” he said.
“I therefore call on Nigerian youth to focus their energy on: (1) strong advocacy and pressure to ensure that the National Assembly passes an electoral reform bill by mid-2021 that includes provisions for electronic transmissions of votes from polling units to the database of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and for Nigerians in diaspora to have the opportunity to vote from abroad; (2) voter registration en masse for the elections in 2023 and subsequent elections, and (3) structural participation in politics, i.e. joining political parties of their individual choice as members, voting, and standing as candidates in elections. All three approaches are essential. It is not enough to simply stand as candidates in the context of Not Too Young, which was nevertheless a commendable initiative,” he added.
The former presidential candidate warned that Nigerian youth are likely to get the same outcomes as the Arab Spring countries if they continue to shy away from politics on the basis of weak excuses such as: ‘our votes will not count’, ‘the elections will be rigged’, among others.
He noted that with these excuses, the youth are surrendering their future to corrupt, incompetent and repressive political leaders, insisting that this should not be an option for the youth in the country.