By Kennedy Dimaku:
Lawmaker representing Nsit/Ubium constituency in Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Hon Onofiok Luke has said that voters’ education is imperative as a panacea to have election free of violence in the country. The lawmaker made his position known at the flag of Youth Campaign Against Electio Violence organized recently in Abuja by Commonwealth Youth Council.
Speaking to journalists, he said voters education is a vital point in election considering the percentage of the population that are eligible including the youths. He added that the energy within these youths could be harnessed by educating them on how best they could engage in the system. He posited, “When the voters’ registration commences, they should mobilize the youths to enroll. Part of the problems we have is that some of these people do not have voter’s card. And when it gets to election, as young people, since they cannot vote, they resort to illegal activities. They want to be known and seen. The only thing you should do on the Election Day to be known is to go and cast your votes. So, if you do not register, there is no possibility of voting and this would result to the youths resorting to violent activities on Election Day.”
He opined that the youths should mobilize themselves as canvassers during voters registration exercise and during election, to make sure that whosoever causes trouble is handed over to the security agents, stressing that the youth should work in conjunction with security agents to see that people are protected during voting exercise.
Hon Luke pointed out that this method worked successful in Akwa Ibom State and posited that it would also work in other parts of the country as regards curbing youths’ involvement in election violence. H advised youths to do everything within their powers as young persons to try and ensure that the country is devoid of violence. He said that greater percentage of the violence that occurs in any country is during election, and obliged the youths to always support candidates based on manifestoes and character, charging politicians to drum the message of violence free election to their supporters.
He however commended Commonwealth Youth Council for gathering young people together to draw an article and have a mindset that violence free election is practicable.