The Gatekeeper Strategy & Other Ideas - (6)- Activate Youth Wings

The late Bola Ige was once the Secretary of the youth wing of the defunct Action Group. He rose to the peak of his political career- becoming the Governor of Oyo State, a Minister and a Presidential aspirant.
The late Chief Remi Fani-Kayode was the leader of that same youth wing in 1954. He would become a member of the Federal House of Assembly and later the Deputy Premier of the Western Region.
The Action Group youth wing used the mosquito as their symbol and wore black shirts, black berets, black sunglasses and black boots. They marched all over the streets of Lagos demanding independence and resisted colonial rule.
They chose the mosquito as their symbol because of how the white man feared malaria- and by extension the mosquito- at that time. Bola Ige was 24, Ayo Adebanjo-another prominent member of the youth wing- was 26. Remi Fani-Kayode was one of the oldest at 33.
I’m not aware any Nigerian political party has active students or youth wings at the moment- even when they claim to have youth leaders who are in their 50s and 60s. ANC was very successful because it had students/youth wings.
Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki and Julius Malema were former leaders of the ANC Youth League. There is the need to look at people who are turning 18 yearly and coming of voting age. It’s time catch them early and indoctrinate them.
Let me share a few statistics for Lagos State tertiary institutions where the youth wings can be set up:

UNILAG has about 49,000 students.

LASU has about 90,000 students

Yabatech has about 15,000 students
Lagos State Polytechnic has a significant student population. Ditto for Lagos City Polytechnic, Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education, Nigerian Institute of Journalism and Federal College of Education Technical, Akoka.
Just imagine if we have active students/youth wings of parties in these schools! This demography is what I would have expected Fela Durotoye, Tope Fasua and other younger contestants during the 2019 Presidential elections to continue to engage.
There must be a strategy around catching people young, educating them about their rights, encouraging them to get their voter’s card and introducing them to the world of politics.
They should go to campuses and organize events that will enlighten young people and sensitize them to their rights. This is even easier to do now that celebrities and entertainers can be involved.
Many however are not willing to do this because it’s a lot of hard work. Most Nigerians are short-distance runners and thinkers, unfortunately.
This is why many candidates fall below the radar until a few months to the election when they suddenly wake up in a frenzy from their slumber.

This is how to build a more enduring system.

Bayo Adeyinka

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This is a very emotional moment for me as I know goodbyes are not easy. I want to take this time out to sincerely appreciate each and every one for your support during my brief sojourn leading the team.
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Let’s do a little bit of history.

In 2003, the party at the centre, PDP, launched a powerful political onslaught to ‘capture’ the South West States of Oyo, Ogun, Ondo, Ekiti, Osun and Lagos States.
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