The All Progressives Congress (APC) has urged Nigerians youths to position themselves to be part of the affairs of the party and to possibly contest for its presidential ticket.
The move to woo the youths came as the party yesterday condemned what it described as the federal government’s insincere and amateurish handling of the strike, which has paralysed academic work in public universities in the country for the third month running.
Addressing representatives of the party’s youths wing at the secretariat in Abuja, the National Deputy Chairman (South), Senator Annie Okonkwo, said the APC was a platform through which Nigerians youths could actualise the political ambition and to contribute to the transformation of the country.
“I believe that APC is the right place for the youths to actualise their ambition and because the party believes strongly in internal democracy, I may not be surprised if the youths aspires for the presidential candidate of APC in 2015.”
Speaking in similar vein, the interim National Secretary, Alhaji Tijani Tumnsa, challenged the youths to harmonise their views and come up with a proactive agenda for participation within the polity.
“I implore you to develop an agenda that will be useful to the political and economic development of the country. The APC as a party is a platform that you can utilise to achieve your political ambitions and I am hoping that at the end of your meeting there will be a framework to engage the youths.”
Tumsa said where the youths fail to articulate their political agenda properly and pursue them, they would not be respected, stressidng that the first step towards participation was for the youths in the party to organise themselves properly
The APC Youth leader, Abubakar Lado Suleija, said the party is already making waves across the country with about 4,000 youths from other parties in Kano, Maidugiri and Kaduna declaring interest to join APC.
Meanwhile, APC has condemned the federal government’s handling of the strike that has paralysed academic work in public universities in the country for the third month running.
In a statement issued yesterday by its interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said the tepid and half-hearted way the government has handled the strike has shown that it does not place much premium on education, which is the path to national development.
It said there was no better indication of the government’s disdain for education than the fact that the Jonathan administration had continued in its profligate ways even as students caught in the web of the strike remained at home when they should be engaged in serious academic work.
APC said since the strike started, the Jonathan administration had thrown at least two mega, money-guzzling dinners in Abuja, perhaps the best example of the aphorism ‘Nero fiddling while Rome burns’. In one of such frivolities, the President and his party folks feasted joyously at a post-PDP convention dinner even as hapless students were bemoaning their fate over the strike.
The party said it was also in the midst of the strike that the First Lady organised the so-called peace rally that brought hundreds of unsuspecting women to Abuja.
”Yet, some ministers had the temerity to insult the sensibilities of Nigerians by saying the government will shut down if it meets ASUU’s demand. What an affront! They did not say Nigeria will shut down when the country paid out 3 trillion naira in non-existent fuel subsidies; they did not say Nigeria will shut down over the N1 trillion spent in the last eight years on less than 500 people; they did not say Nigeria will shut down due to federal government monumental profligacy, which includes spending billions of naira to pamper ex-militants, some of whom are now so overfed that they are threatening the country’s very existence!
APC also said the fact that the strike had persisted despite the president’s directive, widely reported by the media, to the federal government’s negotiating team to do everything possible to end the strike, says a lot about the administration’s credibility.