Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, has asked Nigerian students to fully participate in the 2023 elections by voting for candidates based on their track records.
Gbajabiamila gave the advice on Wednesday in Abuja while welcoming executive members of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), led by their President, Usman Barambu, to his office at the National Assembly.
The Speaker told the students to use the opportunity of 2023 general election vote credible politicians adding that this could only be achieved with their full participation in the electoral process.
“It is important you understand that we recognise the importance of your place in national development.
“Well, for me, you have a lot to do between now and election day. In the next three, four months, you have a lot to do. What I mean is that you have to now begin to look at things differently, be able to look at things the way they are done in other climes, where people will look at things when it comes to politics and elections.
“What do I mean by that? We have so many candidates, not three, not four. People talk about having three frontrunners, perhaps, but as far as I’m concerned, we have 18 candidates running for the President of this country, and I don’t think you should overlook any one of them. You should not.
“What I want you to do, as it is done in advanced democracies, is to look objectively, and this is what is done in other countries where people run on their records,” Speaker advised the students.
The Speaker also said that heI believe that the 2023 general elections was going to be a watershed moment in Nigeria and expressed the belief that is exactly what is going to happen adding that it was the only charge he has for the students because that’s the most important thing before Nigeria right now.
“And I believe the way you have been equipped mentally, I have interacted with so many of you, I believe you’re savvy enough to be able to, in spite of all the noise and the smokescreen, zero in on the right person for Nigeria,” the Speaker added.
Earlier, the NANS President, Barambu said the visit was to show the appreciation of the Nigerian students for the efforts the Speaker put into the resolution of the ASUU crisis.
He also put before the Speaker the request of the students regarding the possibility of the authorities waiving a year of the school calendar in order to usher in a proper academic work, having lost almost three years due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the ASUU strike.
The students also requested the intervention of the Speaker on the possibility of waiving the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) service year age for graduates who might have passed the age limit as a result of the time lost due to the COVID-19 lockdown and the ASUU strike.
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