BY HENRY UMORU
ABUJA — SENATE President, David Mark, has urged Nigerian youths to rise up against electoral or political impunity that undermines Nigeria’s progress as a nation ahead of 2015 elections.
Speaking at the maiden edition of the Initiative of integrity icons international in honour of the publisher of Leadership Newspapers Sam NDA-Isaiah in Minna, Niger State, weekend, senator Mark argued that the call became imperative against the backdrop of recent political developments in the country.
The Senate President, who noted though the nation’s elections were not yet a template for perfection, contended that impunity was no longer the order of the day and urged the youths to insist on their rights and be vigilant as well as actively participate in the electoral system.
According to him, “it will help safe guard democracy adjudged as undoubtedly the superior and the best form of government because it is premised on the respect for man as a reasonable being.”
Represented by his Chief of Staff, Senator Anthony Manzo, Mark explained that democracy with its ballot box was the only political tool that offers Nigerians a fighting chance, because it affords them a viable mechanism to hold those in power accountable.
He said:”Be it examination malpractices, thuggery, rigging, election violence, ballot box snatching, substance abuse, drug trafficking, cultism, kidnapping, armed robbery or banditry, religious extremism and armed insurgency or official corruption- almost all of these deleterious vocations are dominated by youths.
The national ethos has become so bruised that many a youth would not cringe at the prospect of running away with billions of Naira pilfered from the public till.”
“Good governance is not an abstract principle, it is participatory, consensual, accountable, transparent, responsive, efficient, equitable and inclusive. It adheres strictly to the rule of law and affords a bulwark against caprice, arbitrariness and corruption. The fundamental objective of good governance is the acceleration of social, economic and political development, leading to mass and gainful employment and a reduction, if not total eradication of poverty in the land.