By Olaleye Oluwatobi: EPLF Fellow
In fulfillment of his Civic Engagement Activity, Oluwatobi held a Twitter Space Conversation which addressed Youths and citizens in Nigeria on the theme: “ Youth Participation in 21st Century Politics.”
Oluwatobi commenced his discussion by listing the major highlights of the centrality of his topic: The transition of politics from the 20th Century to the 21st Century, The Level of youth participation over the years (Trend), Technology-driven society and civilization today: role of youths. Youths as the greater stakeholder in the commonwealth of Nigeria: Every resource is finite and limited, hence, the need for youth participation in decision-making processes that bear an impact on the Participation at all levels for transparency, accountability, effective legislation, achievable target, and dreams (Vision).
Oluwatobi elaborated on his points on youth participation over the years, and how effective it has been. There is always a reason to recognize the youth as a link between the old, the outgoing, the new, and the incoming. So, that is why the participation of youth is very important because that is the only link.
Participants gave their input on the topic of discourse. Highlighting a few of them be Ighoh Simeon, a Participant who was part of the Space contributed to this conversation and stated that without the participation of youths in the political scene today, the world will be left unrepresented, the youths are a very major part of society. Simeon rounded off by stating that for youths to be actively involved, every youth must see themselves as the only measure and the only tool that Nigeria can be better.
Susan Okolie, an EPLF 2022 Cohort Fellow gave her resolution on the topic. She said the youths over time have lost confidence in governance, in our leaders, and in everything that has to do with politics. Susan stated that the first step that should be taken to ensure citizen participation is active sensitization: So, youths’ fixated mindset has to be unbundled. We need to exemplify the true value of democracy; the true value of leadership and what Democracy truly means. If the youths are not involved, then there is no true Democracy.
The space served as a clarion call to every youth, to do their bid in participating at all levels for the sake of transparency, accountability, effective legislation, achievable target, and dreams.