By oluwatope Lawanson

Civil Society : Groups, Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), the Mandela Washington Fellowship Alumni Association of Nigeria (MWFAAN) and YALI Network, has charged Youths to ensure participation beyond the use of social media in the forthcoming general elections.

The CSOs gave the call during a peace walk with the theme “9jaVotes2023 campaign” in Lagos.

Mr Mosope Coker, the Program Manager of YALI, said the walk was aimed at raising awareness among citizens about the importance of peaceful and credible elections.

Coker emphasised the importance of citizens believing in Nigeria’s future noting that it could only be achieved through voting in the upcoming elections.

He stated that MWFAN and YALI Network are not partisan and that citizens should turn out in large numbers to vote for any candidate of their choice.

Speaking, the President of MWFAAN, Mrs Olorunfunmi Adebajo-Olafimihan stated that the YALI 9jaVotes Campaign was first launched in 2019 by the Unites States Consulate to promote youth engagement in Nigerian Politics.

According to her, Mandela Washington Fellowship saw a need to continue the project in 2023 as the role of Nigerian youths in ensuring a free, fair and violence free election in the 2023
general elections continues to be a critical determinant of election outcomes.

“The association has supported 10 state chapters of the YALI Network to “carry out non-partisan community sensitisation projects.

This was aimed at boosting voter turnout, promoting voting integrity and inspiring communities to reject violence during the coming elections,” she said.

On her part, Rabiat Omotoyosi, Public Relations officer, YALI Network urged the electorates to guard their Permanent Voter’s Cards and to cast an informed vote.

She also advised citizens not to sell their votes for money and to work together in peace during the elections to ensure a peaceful and credible electoral process.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that during the peace walk, participants carried placards and banners with messages promoting peace, stability and credible elections.

NAN also reports that the walk which was organised by MWFAAN and YALI Network served as a reminder of the importance of peaceful and credible elections and the role citizens play in shaping the future of Nigeria. NAN


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