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Fashola seeks legislation to make voting a duty, urges youths not to vote in anger

By Jimisayo Opanuga
29 June 2022   |   3:08 pm
Fashola has said he would like to see a constitutional amendment that will make it a duty for citizens to vote, rather than a right.

Babatunde Raji Fashola

Fashola has said he would like to see a constitutional amendment that will make it a duty for citizens to vote, rather than a right.

He made this statement yesterday at the 6th Babatunde Raji Fashola (BRF) Gabfest with the theme: ‘What are you voting for?’ held in Lagos, while reacting to the increase in Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) registration and what should motivate citizens to get involved in voting their representatives into elective offices.

Fashola insisted that no system was perfect, adding that he does not subscribe to the notion that the Nigerian situation was hopeless.

The former Lagos State governor, however, added that democracy does not guarantee good governance.

He said: “Democracy is not divine. It’s a man-made idea – created by men. Democracy is not perfect and so, must be constantly modified. It’s the combination of the instrument, institution and citizens that can guarantee good governance.”

Ahead of the 2023 election, Fashola, who stressed the need for people to continue to build, urged citizens, especially the youths, not to vote in anger. “You can’t make decisions in anger because anger is not a strategy. I urge you to make your choices, not in anger. I order you to vote by looking at what the candidates have done before and what they say they are likely to do.

“I order you to act like proper employers, who interview candidates before they take them. In exercising that right, you don’t get angry, you don’t recruit in anger, you recruit by sound reasoning,” he said.

The Minister also spoke about different arms of government and how much influence they wield in shaping the nation.

“The local government is the most important branch of government. Let us pay attention to the local government because we all seem to be fixated on who becomes the president,” he said.

The hybrid event started with a panel discussion centered on the qualities of the next set of leaders Nigerians should look out for.

Six panelists garnered from various fields of endeavour spoke extensively on governance and also provided constructive insight into nation-building and the 2023 elections.

The annual event, conceived as part of efforts targeted at creating a platform for the active involvement of the youth in Nigeria’s future, is an activity lined up to celebrate the 59th birthday of the Minister.

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