PDP claims credit for ‘Not Too Young To Run’ bill

Uche secondus

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has asked President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) not to take credit for the ‘Not Too Young to Run’ Act signed by the president on Thursday. The opposition party said the bill was its initiative.

The president signed the ‘Not Too Young To Run’ bill into law inside the Council Chambers of State House Presidential Villa, in the presence of invited youth from across the county.

In a brief remark after signing the bill, the president told his audience, comprising representatives of young persons from the 36 states and Abuja, that “you can aspire for president but please postpone your campaign till after 2019 election”.

The PDP, in a statement on Thursday, said the bill was “sponsored and pursued by the PDP members in the National Assembly and state houses of assembly so the presidency and the APC can’t take credit for it”.

“President Buhari had no input whatsoever in the bill; never showed any support or enthusiasm towards the initiative but had no option than to perform a mandatory statutory duty of assenting to the bill, given that it had already passed through the constitutionally required approval of two-third of states in the federation,” the opposition party said.

This, the party said is a democratic victory for the Nigerian youth over forces, “particularly, the All Progressives Congress (APC), that had hitherto disdained and disregarded them as lazy and inconsequential but had to succumbed to the dictates of the law and pressure by the youth and the PDP.”

“The ‘Not too young campaign’ which is now global started in support of bills and motions moved by Tony Nwulu in the House of Representatives and AbdulAziz Nyako in the Senate,” it added.

Although Mr Nwulu is a member of the PDP, Mr Nyako is officially an APC senator from Adamawa. He and his father, Murtala Nyako, ex-Adamawa governor, joined the APC from the PDP in the build up to 2015 general elections. They are, however, having a running battle with the APC governor in Adamawa amidst rumours they would return to the PDP.

The PDP commended the sponsor of the bill, Mr Nwulu “a member of the house who represents PDP, Lagos and the resilience of the Nigerians youth in getting the initiative through, in line with the vision of the PDP to allow younger Nigerians to actively participate in elective positions in governance at all levels.”

The party noted that in preparation for this bill, it had since launched ‘Generation Next Movement’, which put younger Nigerians at vantage positions to participate in elective positions ahead of the 2019 general elections.

“In line with the ‘Generation Next Movement’, the rebranded PDP among other pro-youth incentives, has since approved certain critical clauses and waivers so that the young people will actively vie for positions in the 2019 general elections.

“In line with our dream of providing enabling environment for youthparticipation in elections and governance, the PDP, after winning in 2019, will further lower the age qualification to entrench our vision that ‘whoever can vote can be voted for’, which is a global standard.”  (Premium Times )

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