2023 election is make or break for Nigeria, envoy warns
• Youths ready to provide leadership, YIAGA affirms
British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, has warned that Nigeria’s next general elections could either make or break the country.
Laing said this in Victoria Island, Lagos, yesterday, at the third edition of The Convergence, a gathering of youth candidates running for political office in Nigeria.
The event was hosted by YIAGA Africa and the Not Too Young To Run movement.
Laing said: “The next election in Nigeria is a make or break. The outcome and conduct of the election is very important and the UK is currently tracking the buildup.
“We are in a region where democracy is backsliding and there have been coups across Africa. The world will be looking at the next election. We need to build a coalition of democracy. We hope that the President will also sign the Electoral Act.”
Executive Director, Yiaga Africa and Convener, Not Too Young To Run, Samson Itodo, said: “This project is to reach out to young people who want to go into politics. We have seen young people who emerged victorious in past elections and demonstrated leadership.”
“We are making a bold statement and providing evidence that young people are ready. They are not ready because they want to seize political power at all costs; they are ready because they want to provide excellent public leadership that Nigeria deserves at this point.
“The best we can do, as civil society organisations, is to provide necessary support, inspiration and solidarity, and we want young persons out there to know that they are not alone.
On his part, APC youth leader, Ismaeel Ahmed, who said youths “must change things from the bottom up”, added: “2015 was about change, 2023 is about young people. Democracy is about showing up. You cannot sit at home. You have to show up, join a political party.”