Direct Primary: Sign 2021 Electoral Act If You Love Youth, Senator Abbo Tells PMB

Senator Elisha Ishaku Abbo, representing Adamawa North in the Senate, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to sign the 2021 Electoral Act into law if he truly loves Nigerian youth and also deepened the country’s democracy.
Abbo made the appeal yesterday in Abuja where he was honoured with a ward of most friendly youth senator by the National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN).
He said the adoption of direct primaries for internal political parties’ contestants in the new electoral bill is in favour of the youth and will deepen the ‘Not Too Young To Run’ bill signed by Mr President.
He described the indirect primary of delegates system as highly expensive, saying no young person can afford it.
“I’m one of those who voted in favour of direct primary. We are all Nigerians and we know a lot about money politics, so the youth of Nigeria are asking for direct primary and that was why as a single person in the National Assembly I voted in the favour of direct primary, the reason being that the delegate system is very expensive. You have to look for money to buy delegates and sometimes you have to buy one delegate for over N500,000. It is highly monitise, the delegates are asking you for money and where would the young people have money to buy them?
But when you say direct primary, you go down to every card carrying member of the party to canvass for his or her vote because you can’t bribe over five thousand people within your ward in a day to vote for you. Who are those that are actually the card carry members of the party, they are the youth. So, if you allow direct primary to go on, it means the young people would have opportunities to get into power.
“Mr President signed ‘Not Too Young To Run’ act and for the act to come into play, he has to sign this electoral act amendment so that there would be direct primaries in Nigeria,” Senator Abbo said.
He urged the President to disregard those who are mounting pressure on him not to sign the bill, saying they are selfish Nigerians who have stolen the wealth of the country and want to use the stolen funds to buy power.
“Suppose you have just 20 delegates in your award or constituency, somebody somewhere who has stolen money would come and buy them. So, we are advocating and continue to say Mr President if you love the youth of this country, sign the bill into law, forget about the people who are kicking against it, they are doing that because they are in control of the party, but the National Assembly said we should take the party to the people and not to the money bags. “Currently, the governors, ministers, thieves of yesterday and the rich men control the party because they have the money.
“In 2019, Mr President won his party ticket through direct primary. So, if Mr President won his own election through direct primary, why are they asking him not to sign the bill. Mr President knows the truth and the youth are saying yes for direct primary and it is in the favour of the masses.”

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