#NotTooYoungToRun: U.S govt offer support to young Nigerians on bill
Youth advocating for a reduction in age for Nigerians seeking elective positions, reignited their campaign today during #NotTooYoungToRun public debate session organised by Youth Initiative for Advocacy, Growth and Advancement (YIAGA).
The advocacy session which took place at Barcelona Hotel Abuja on Tuesday, witnessed a massive turn-up from youths and well-aged individuals from all works of life.
Section 65 (1)(a) and (b) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), provides that a Nigerian citizen who intends to run for the office of the president must be at least 40-years-old; Senate, 35; while the federal and state houses of assembly from 30.
YIAGA, a youth-based non-governmental organization that promotes democratic governance, human rights and youth political participation through the #NotTooYoungToRun bill is seeking an amendment in this constitution, soliciting a reduction which will make the office of President from ages 40 to 30 years, office of Governor from 35 to 30 years, the Senate and Governorship from 35 to 30 years, and the federal and state houses of assembly from 30 to 25 years.
This bill was sponsored by the lawmaker representing Oshodi/Isolo Federal Constituency of Lagos state at the House of Representatives, Hon. Tony Nwulu.
Another mainstay on which the bill stands is to conventionalise independent candidacy into the country’s electoral process. The bill has passed second reading and is currently at the Committee Stage. For the bill to become a law, it would need to pass through third reading, moved to the Senate for concurrence and president for assent.
Proponents of the bill are of the view that the youths (over 70 million people in Nigeria) if allowed to lead would stair the affairs of the country better than previous leaders (older politicians), as opposed to the norm of being used as thugs by old, fetish politicians to win elections and dumped afterwards.