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2023: Balance religion, ethnicity in choice of presidential running mates — NENYLC tells parties

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Thursday, June 16th, 2022
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By Luminous Jannamike, Abuja

The Nigeria Ethnic Nationalities Youth Leaders’ Council, NENYLC, has called on political parties in the country to balance their presidential tickets across religious and ethnic divides.

According to the Council, doing so will protect and sustained the country’s democratic values, taking into account the diversity of the people.

It noted that with the trend of political activities and arrangement of the main political parties, there was the possibility of having Muslims as the President and Vice President in the new dispensation.

Briefing journalists in Abuja, NENYLC’s President-General, Comrade Terry Obieh, also cautioned political actors against over heating the polity, stressing that the 2023 election should not be a do-or-die affair.

He said, “National unity has now become inevitably difficult to achieve, especially at this critical point in time. We, therefore, call on all political parties to give a sense of belonging to every segment of our population.

“We need each other to move this country forward. We cannot afford to be further polarised and excessively divided at this perilous times. Unity, security and national development are key drivers towards attaining the Nigeria of our dream.

“The 2023 election should not be made a do-or-die affair, hence the need for all presidential Candidates, political parties and other candidates and citizens not to overheat the polity with hate speech.

“Instead, they should extol the virtues of peace and sportsmanship qualities before, during and after the general elections.

“We demand that all political parties should as a matter of necessity balance religious and ethnicity related issues so as to protect and sustained the values of democracy in the country.

“Being a secular state in line with the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, political parties should, therefore, embrace a joint opposite religion, presidential ticket based on competitive competence and positive values, and not predicated merely on compensatory opportunism.”

Obieh also noted that politics in a saner climes were about constructive criticisms, issue-based engagement and genuine debates when necessary.

“Values, they say, shape human progress. So, we shall be embarking on a national peace tour to promote PVC registration awareness, as well build synergy with INEC, security agencies and other critical stakeholders at all levels to collectively drive the ship of the state to an expected promise land beyond 2023,” he added.

Vanguard News Nigeria

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