Communication, grassroots engagement best for democracy- APC Youth leader
Dayo Israel, APC National Youth Leader
By Emmanuel Mogbede
Mr Dayo Isreal, APC National Youth Leader, has called on the party`s leadership to prioritise communication and grassroots engagements to strengthen democracy in the country.
He said this on Wednesday in Abuja at a conversational round table with the theme; Electorate and Elections: The Parties, The People and The Possibilities in celebration of Mr Ismaeel Ahmed.
Ahmed, a former National Youth Leader of the APC, was marking his 43rd birthday anniversary.
Isreal noted that waiting until election period before communicating and engaging those at the grassroots was not in the interest of the party and the promotion of democracy.
He said the greatest take away from the just concluded general elections was that Nigerian electorate had become more conscious of their political power to choose who governs them.
“We must continue to communicate and engage the people, I believe that by the grace of Almighty, the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, will do exceptional much more than can be imagined,” he said.
Isreal advised political leaders to always ask what the people wanted before embarking on developmental projects, saying this would engender the buy-in of the constituents.
He stressed the need for youths in the party to have a united front to speak and negotiate for better deal for Nigerians.
Also speaking at the event, Dr Nkem Okeke, a former Deputy Governor of Anambra, said that the introduction of BVAS by INEC changed the narrative in the just concluded elections.
He said that if America, in spite of its electronic voting and transmission of election results, still had issues with its elections, Nigeria’s election could only get better with time.
He added that those occupying elective offices must always do the right thing so they would be judged positively by history.
Ahmed, in his remark, stressed the need for youths in the party to set an agenda and work in unity to achieve their political targets.
He called for the institutionalisation of power in the country, adding that party supremacy must be given priority in the scheme of things.
He said though the just concluded elections were free, fair and credible, there was need for improvement as is the case in every election in the world.
Ahmed said he had been discussing contemporary issues affecting the society, constituencies, and the country generally with young people.
He said the just concluded elections were a great improvement on previous elections in the country.
“INEC has done well because as a party in government, we lost election where we had never lost before: Lagos, Yobe and some other states which had never happened before.
“A government in power had never lost election in Katsina for example, especially when the incumbent president is from that state.
“We lost election in the Villa, we lost completely and was almost absent in the South-East and we didn’t have a major inroad in the South-south,” he said.
Ahmed added that even the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) won in Osun, which was supposed to be one of Tinubu’s strongholds.
He said the genuineness and transparency of the 2023 general elections could not be faulted, adding that it should be made a reference point in the country’s political history.
Ahmed said while the opposition parties had the right to go to court to challenge a few flaws noticed at the elections to test the veracity of their claims, they were not doing themselves and the country any good.
“We should rather look forward to how to strengthen and amend the new Electoral Act to ensure that some of the lapses noticed in the elections were addressed before the next election,” he said