From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Former National Youth Council of Nigeria president and the All Progressives Congress (APC) chairmanship aspirant for the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), Comerade Bello Shagari, has urged the older politicians to relinquish power to the younger generation in the forth coming FCT area council polls.
Shagari made the appeal while fielding questions from newsmen on the sideline of the screening of aspirants at the party’s national Secretariat on Tuesday.
He boasted that the youths, strengthened by the “Not too young to run Act” are now better prepared, equipped to handle leadership positions and wrestle power from the older generation.
He further argued that the passage and accent to the “Not too young to run” bill in 2015 by President Muhammadu Buhari has opened up the political space and paved ways for young Nigerians with requisite capacities and capabilities to aspire to any position of their choice in the land.
“Under this administration, we are beginning to see the involvement of young people in governance with the likes of Ahmed Bashir, Ismail Ahmed, and more recently the appointment of EFCC chairman.
“So, I think we have started to forge the path to youth takeover in this country and my aspiration also is that another opportunity is being presented to us to take the mantle of leadership and I believe it will happen but it will be gradually.
“We must give kudos to the older ones, they are the ones who did it for us in 2015, but now they must be ready to surrender this power, they must be ready to encourage us, and we are ready to takeover,” he said.
On his manifestos and plan for the people of AMAC if elected as the council chairman, the 33-year-old identified transportation, healthcare and education as key priorities of his administration, stressing that his mission would be to urbanise the entire municipal council including the inner rural suburbs and not just the city centre.
While reacting to the issues concerning the demands of Abuja natives on alleged marginalization of indigenes and request for mayoral status, Sagari said that the FCT truly deserves a mayoral status, emphasising that given the cosmopolitan nature of Abuja as the nation’s centre of unity, it was imperative we play up citizenship above indigeneship as the FCT belongs to all Nigerian regardless of State of origin.
“I am not an advocate of indigenization, I have always preached against someone being an indigene. We are all Nigerians.
“What is the essence of using quota system to choose who will do the job when we can find people who can do the job regardless of wherever they come from, tribe, ethnicity or language they speak?
“Left to me, I will say we should even scrap the indigeneship system and replace it with citizenship because we are just further disintegrating ourselves,” he stressed.