Senate President Bukola Saraki has hit a brick wall in his run toward the presudency in 2019 as the youth platform he tries to exploit has turned against him.
The ‘Not Too Young To Run’ movement dissociated itself from the formal Saraki’s declaration Thursday.
The group, which advances youth participation in politics, said it was disappointed by Mr Saraki’s decision to use its non-partisan platform for his own political gains.
“We strongly condemn this act by the President of the Senate and dissociates ourselves from this political move,” the movement said in a statement by its convener, Samson Itodo.
According to the group, as part of efforts to promote youth candidacy and democratic party primaries, the Not Too Young To Run movement commenced a series of public town hall meetings with the leadership of political parties and young aspirants to address the challenges faced by young aspirants in securing party tickets.
It has planned to meet in three three town hall meetings with the leadership of the All Progressive Congress (APC); People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and other parties.
The first dialogue held today August 30, 2018 in Abuja with the leadership of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
Present were the Chairman of the party Mr. Uche Secondus; Senator Bukola Saraki, Hon. Udeh Okoye, National Youth Leader of the party, and young aspirants registered under the Ready To Run platform.
The young aspirants advocated for a reduction in the cost of party nomination forms and requested the party to uphold internal democracy in the conduct of party primaries. In his response, the Chairman of the PDP assured the young aspirants of their support for youth candidacy in the forthcoming primaries.
Saraki, according to the statement, however, seized the moment and declared his intention to run for the office of the President in the 2019 elections.
“The movement wishes to express its disappointment with Senator Saraki for usurping a platform designed for young aspirants to dialogue with party leadership to advance his personal political ambition,” the group said.
“We strongly condemn this act by the President of the Senate and dissociates ourselves from this political move.”
The movement then restated its commitment to sustain its engagement with political parties to ensure youth candidacy and democratic party primaries.