The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), has cautioned youths and students against ethnic and religious sentiments ahead of the 2023 General Elections.
The Coordinator, NANS Zone F, South-East, Onya Ibeabuchi-Moses, alias ‘Aluta Apostle’, who gave the advice in a statement issued on Friday in Abuja, said Nigeria’s democracy had come of age.
According to Ibeabuchi-Moses, Nigerian youths and students must look beyond ethnic and religious sentiments when electing their next president and other leaders.
He, therefore, urged Nigerians to take firm decisions on who could salvage the country, and not because the candidates were either Igbos, Hausas, Fulanis, Gwaris, Ibibios, Tivs, Yorubas, or any tribe for that matter.
“2023 General Elections is by the corner; it is very important for all Nigerians who desire a paradigm shift from the retrogressive status quo we have found ourselves, to a new Nigeria with unlimited possibilities and hope.
“Our dear country has been plunged into some sordid realities, ranging from insecurity, unproductiveness of our economy, increase in poverty, rising crime rate, ethnic and religious crises, and other sundry issues,” he said.
Ibeabuchi-Moses, who listed recent events, including the Church attack in Owo, Ondo State on June 5, where innocent worshipers were maimed and heinously killed, and many ongoing attacks and abductions across Nigeria, said it was time for Nigerians to come together and salvage what was left of the country.
He called on youths and students to “wake up from their slumber” and go all out on election day to do what was necessary.
According to him, it is the only power the youths have to decide their future, and their resolve to change the country for good.
“They can buy delegate votes, but the truth remains that we are articulate, ever conscious, dogged and currently enlightened to be bought by these businessmen in power.
“I am also calling on our celebrities, who are mainly youths, to come on board and use their platforms to preach the message of hope, reawakening and voter education.
“This would go a long way to enable their teeming fans, followers and our youths to do the right thing.
“I would also advise that we jettison party loyalty and support, and vote for candidates with proven track records and perceptible competencies,” he said.
He admonished the youths to carry along people around them, adding that their friends, relatives and community, should also be enlightened on the need to join this struggle.
“We must take decisions as Nigerians who want Nigeria to succeed.
“Nigeria needs a leader with a pre-defined political ideology, and together we can do this. Let us stand up and prove to the world that indeed Nigerians are ready for a better Nigeria,” Ibeabuchi-Moses said. (NAN)