The INEC #YouthVotesCount campus outreach was organised within the framework of the European Union Support to Democratic Governance in Nigeria (EU-SDGN) programme by INEC with technical assistance from the European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES) and funding from the European Union. The event took place on the 7th August 2018 at the Musa Abdullahi auditorium, new Campus, Bayero University, Kano, Kano state, Nigeria.
The objective of the campaign was to increase the level of youth, women, Persons With Disabilities and other vulnerable groups participation in elections as well as boost citizens trust and confidence in the electoral process. It is expected that the program will increase the enthusiasm of young people to participate in the electoral process by participating in the CVR and PVC distribution exercise.
The town hall meeting featured pep talks, panel discussion, and music performances. The panel discussion featured popular celebrities and youth champions, INEC Youth Ambassador, Kannywood actress Nafisat Abdullahi, award-winning Musician Korede Bello, award-winning Nollywood and Kannywood actor, Yakub Mohammed El-Yakub and was moderated by multi-award winning Channels TV reporter, Gimba Umar to inspire young people to perform their civic duty informed by the dynamic nature of the youth demography which requires using creative tools that appealed to them and inspires them to participate actively in the electoral process.
The program leveraged on the youth pop culture, demography, resilience, and energy for electoral education. Primarily, the program focused on the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) and collection of Permanent Voter Card (PVC). It also provided a platform for instilling the values of patriotism, volunteerism, civic participation and non-violence in young people.
The Youth Vote Count campaign will be taken to selected tertiary institutions across the federation. It will feature panel discussions, community outreach activities, social media campaigns and volunteers’ recruitment.
The Specific Objectives were:
1. To enlighten young people on their roles in the electoral process
2. Mobilize young people especially first-time voters to participate in the continuous voter registration process and permanent voter card collection exercise
3. To provide a platform for engagement between INEC and young people on preparations for the 2019 elections
4. Inspire and recruit youth as volunteers to act as vanguards of voter education, electoral integrity and peaceful elections.
At the end of the event, the following results were achieved;
1. Increased turnout of youths for the CVR and PVC collection exercise in outreach locations
2. The knowledge of young people on the electoral process is improved
3. Young people enthusiastically sign up to volunteer for voter education, electoral integrity and peaceful elections
4. The confidence of young people in the electoral process is boosted
On the sidelines of the town hall, a voter education booth camp/desk will be created for INEC to provide additional information on electoral process as well as process complaints and enquiries on the voter registration amongst other things. Students will be given volunteer pledge cards or sign up forms.
The event had in attendance the Hon. INEC Chairman represented by Prince Solomon Soyebi, The Deputy Ambassador of the EU Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Mr. Richard Young, The German Ambassador to Nigeria, Dr. Bernhard Schlagheck, Hon. INEC National Commissioners, Chief Technical Advisor to the INEC Chairman, Special Advisor to the INEC Chairman, Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, other senior Management teams of INEC and over 2000 students.
#EU4DemocracyNG #YouthVotesCount #electoralassistance #DemocracySupport #Inclusion