The former national legal adviser of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Muiz Banire has warned the party to brace up for real test in 2023 when President Muhammadu Buhari’s second term in office ends, adding that the cracks in the leadership circle of the party will make it difficult for it to survive.
The three-time commissioner in Lagos State stated this on Thursday at the 2019 opening ceremony of United Action for Change, which was held in Oshodi, Lagos State. Speaking on the theme “The Nigerian Youth,” Banire advised both the general public and the leadership of the party on how to safeguard its future, adding that its future lies on how the elders treat the youth.
“It is the president that is holding the party together. When he leaves office, the party will scatter and that is when we will face a real test,” he said. “We have people who run the party as if it is a union. Others think the party is their family meeting and want to dictate what will go. If the party fails, the young generation will have to start afresh.”
He advised Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to put plans in place to start building a decent generation of youths, adding that the practice where governors install their cronies in local government elections should be abolished.
“Since the local government wants to be autonomous, it will be better for the federal government to also see the elections of these local governments. Local government elections are supposed to be breeding ground for future politicians who should be mostly youths, but governors have turned it to selective posts,” he stated.
He also advised youths on how to overcome intimidating old political moneybags: “If you people can gather and have a representative; if you can look for how to be relevant to your immediate environment; and if you can say no to the pressure of corruption, maybe then, you will have a chance to become leaders. These elders can’t make a policy that will benefit you, even I can’t in totality make a policy that will benefit you, it is you who should be making policy for yourself.”
Otunba Olufemi Okenla, Chief Executive Officer, Ibis Hotel, who was also the chairman of the planning committee, enjoined youths to make the most of the three-day camping seminar. “This is the fourth edition which shows that there is progress. We are trying to build leaders who will be selfless and diligent in their services. The main aim of this gathering is not for you to meet people, but how you can use the person you are meeting here for good for yourself and another,” he stated.
Dignitaries scheduled to appear at the three-day seminar included Mr Gabriel Ogbechie, Group General Manager, Rainoil, Dr Garba Abari, Director-General, National Orientation Agency (NOA) and Mrs Ibidun Ighodalo, wife of respected Lagos Pastor, Ituah Ighodalo among others.