Appoint 40% of youth as ministers, candidates for coalition tasks

A coalition of young presidential candidates and former hopefuls have said Nigerians should direct presidential candidates to nominate 40 percent of young people to ministerial and other senior government posts before casting their votes.

In the indictment, which was delivered at a forum in Abuja on Wednesday, many of the hopefuls demanded that All Progressives Congress presidential candidate Bola Tinubu; his counterpart in the Labor Party, Peter Obi, and the flag-bearer of the People’s Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, must sign a social contract to actively involve young people when they are elected.

The development is close to 86 days after the 2023 presidential elections.

Speaking at the event, APC’s youngest presidential hopeful, Nicolás Félix, said the coalition’s purpose was not for selfish personal gain.

He said: “This election is very crucial because Nigeria needs serious fixes. That is why I am championing the cause for at least 40 percent of Nigerian youth to enter government, either by election or appointment, so that we can fix our country.

“We want young people as governors, ministers, heads of parastatals, legislators in state assemblies, and presidents of local governments.

“The 2023 presidential election is one that many of us have hoped to participate in. Who will win the ticket? We may not be able to say for sure. But what is visible to everyone is that, so far, the odds seem to be in favor of the three main candidates and on May 29, one of them will replace President Muhammadu Buhari,” he said.

His position was echoed by former Labor Party presidential and current senatorial candidate Erastus Anslem, who revealed that the group had agreed to criticize a demand letter over the top three political candidates for the inclusion of youth in government.

“The percentage that we are demanding is 40%. Young people make up more than 70 percent of the voting population in Nigeria. Ideally, if we all turn out to vote, we shouldn’t have less than 50 to 60 million votes.

“But we cannot continue to deliver this magnitude of votes without the corresponding reward. The reward should be good government, not what we put in our pocket. We are facing a day, probably in January, in which the presidential candidates are going to sign with us. It is going to be a social path, although we know that only one person will win,” he said.

Among other political personalities present at the forum were the vice-presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress, Ahmed Buhari; former United Democratic Party presidential hopeful Dr. Awwal Aliyu; the Director General of the Assembly of APC States, Dagogo Fubara; National Unity Party 2019 presidential standard-bearer Moses Atibiowu and African Action Congress presidential candidate Omoyele Sowore who were represented.

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