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Former President, National Youth Council of Nigeria, and chairmanship aspirant of Abuja Municipal Area Council, AMAC, under the platform of All Progressives Congress, APC, Comrade Bello Shagari, has warned older politicians to be ready to surrender power to the younger ones in the forthcoming FCT area council polls.
Shagari handed the warning Tuesday while addressing pressmen at the national secretariat of APC after attending the party’s screening for aspirants jostling for area councils top job.
The former youth leader boasted that the youths, backed by the “Not too young to run” law are now better prepared and equipped to handle leadership positions and to wrestle power from the older generation.
Shagari, who frowned at the exclusion of youths in politics and governance system in the country over the years, noted that the passage and assent to the “Not too young to run” bill in 2015 by President Muhammadu Buhari have 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.
He said, “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 take over.”
Speaking on his manifestos and plan for the people of AMAC if elected as the council chairman,  the 33-yr-old former youth leader identified transportation, healthcare and education as key areas his administration would accord priority attention, adding that his mission would be to urbanise the entire municipal council including the inner rural suburbs and not just the city centre.
Sagari, who faulted the present transportation system in the metropolis for lack of safety and security of commuters, recanted his horrible experience in the hands of a highway criminal gang known as “once chance” who carted away valuable items from him at gunpoint while trying to board a taxi to a location in the city.
He stressed that if AMAC had a properly established and managed transportation system with an effective database of motorists and commuters, the issue of safety and security of passengers would be completely addressed.
The chairmanship aspirant also promised to address the problem of multiple taxations and the menace of the AMAC task force by streamlining the present existing taxes in the council in order to lessen the tax burden on transport operators so that they can be comfortable running their businesses.
While reacting to the issues concerning the demands of Abuja natives on alleged marginalization of indigenes and request for mayoral status, Sagari said though the FCT truly deserves a mayoral status, 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’m not an advocate of indigenization, I have always preached against someone being an indigene. We are all  Nigerians.
“What is the essence of using a 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.
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, had earlier announced February 12, 2022, as the date for the conduct of elections into the six area councils of the FCT.
The election would be for the offices of chairmen of six area councils and 62 councillorship seats in the FCT, whose tenure would expire in May 2022.
According to the timetable of the election released by the electoral body, collection of Forms EC9 (Formerly CF001) and EC9B (Formerly CF002) for the election would commence on April 1, while the conduct of party primaries and resolution of disputes arising from the primaries would hold between April 1 and April 24, 2021.


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