The Chairman of Nigerian Ethnic Nationality Youth Leaders Forum (NENYLF), Alhaji Yerima Shetimma, has said that the conduct of the recently concluded elections was a sign that the nation’s democracy is in danger.
Shetimma, who is also the President, Arewa Consultative Youth Forum, said this during a peace and unity rally organised by NENYLF in Yaba, Lagos.
He said he was sad that the general election in the country was marred by violence which led to the death of citizens and that if the situation was not addressed, it could have dire consequences on the nation.
“Our outing is a result of the injustice meted on Nigerians. We intend to go across the six geo-political zones and ensure that we speak to the people and let them realise the consequences of what is happening in the country because democracy has been raped already.
“For some of us who have a passion for the people, having spent over 20 years in the trenches and made sacrifices, it is our responsibility to ensure that people of like minds come together and ensure the right thing is done.
“For instance, we do not understand why the military is playing a major role in an election in a constitutional democracy such as ours. This is not the kind of democracy we all envisaged; we thought that our democratic process would have improved by now.
“That is why some of us feel that we need to draw attention to it and tell Nigerians the consequences of this recent election. Both the presidential and governorship elections, there was nothing to write home about. They were marred by violence, voter intimidation, and suppression and is an abuse on the sensibility of Nigerians.
“If you observed, there was a high turnout of voters during the presidential election, but you could see the low voter turnout in the second elections; that was a clear indication that Nigerians are not happy about some of the events that took place in the first election.
“Some of us saw this coming and when we drew the attention of Nigerians to it, many people felt that we were just talking because we wanted to talk.
“For us as activists, we will mobilise and rally people around. We won’t just fold our hands and allow people to run the country as if the country is being ruled by an emperor. We won’t sit down and allow Nigerians to be treated as if we are in a Banana republic,” Shetimma said.