- The Not Too Young To Run movement has continued its hard-work in achieving increased youth representation in elective offices ahead of the 2019 general elections
- The movement is however concerned about the lack of internal party democracy and high cost of party nomination
- They say the challenges will affect the representation of young people and persons with disability in political offices
The Not Too Young To Run movement has lamented the lack of internal party democracy and high cost of party nomination affecting the chances of young people and persons living with disabilities ahead of the 2019 general elections.
The group made its stance known on the issue on Monday, July 30, at a press briefing in Abuja, stressing that the situation “continually undermines the emergence of youth (men and women) candidates in the 2019 general elections.”
“We remain resolute in our belief that increased representation of young men and women and persons with disability in political office will enhance the quality of democracy and governance," the group added.
The movement stated that they will be engaging political parties to make demand that political parties reserve party tickets for young people with character, capacity and competence.
They demanded for 298 tickets out of the available 900 tickets for the Houses of Assembly election nationwide and 109 tickets out of the available 360 tickets for the House of Representatives elections nationwide.
The movement also asked political parties to prescribe and enforce spending limits for party nomination fees and charges and cost for nomination of young candidates.
Their demands are as follows;
1. House of Assembly aspirant – N200,000
2. House of Representatives aspirant – N400,000
3. Senatorial aspirant – N600,000
4. Governorship aspirant – N1,000,000
5. Presidential aspirant – N2,000,000
The movement also tasked political parties to adopt open, transparent and direct party primaries in the candidate selection process for the 2019 elections.
The movement went a step further to declare Wednesday, August 8 as the National Day of Action on Youth Candidacy and Democratic Party Primaries.
“We will be organizing a march to the national and state offices of political parties to press the demands highlighted above.
“The National Day of Action is a demands march to political parties as they prepare to hold primary elections to select candidates for the 2019 general elections.
“The National Day of Action is scheduled to hold simultaneously in Abuja as well as the 36 states across the country on the same date.
“We believe that election remains a mechanism for asserting our sovereignty as a people and we commit to mobilizing 50 million registered young men and women to collect their Permanent Voters Card (PVC) and vote in the 2019 elections.
“We will also mobilize registered young voters to vote for parties that accede to our demands and uphold the principles of transparency and accountability in the candidate selection process.
“As a movement of citizens committed to democratic development we recognize the value of political legitimacy in representative democracy, we commit to mobilizing citizens against all forms of voter inducement, electoral corruption and electoral violence,” the group said.
Meanwhile, a member of the House of Representatives and sponsor of the Not Too Young To Run bill, Tony Nwulu, has dumped the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) due to what he termed, “irreconcilable conflicts in the party.”
Nwulu made this known at a news conference on Tuesday, July 24, shortly after the plenary session where he also announced his defection to the United Progressives Party.
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