Nigeria: Atedo Peterside joins political party and urges Nigerians to do the same

Mr Peterside said he joined the SDP after studying the party.

Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC founder Atedo Peterside said he joined a political party and registered as a member of the Social Democratic Party.

Mr Peterside said he was not yet planning to run for political office but planned to work to help clean up the Nigerian political system in a way that would help produce quality leaders. He urged all adult Nigerians to do the same.

“No one will come from Mars or Jupiter to improve Nigeria’s political parties. If they remain flawed, they are likely to systematically vomit bad choices,” he said on Arise TV’s morning show, where he initially indicated that he had joined a political party without disclosing it. the name of the party to which he joined.

He later posted on Twitter that he had registered with the SDP after commissioning a review to study the 18 available parties.

*After careful consideration, I have decided to join the Social Democratic Party (SDP),” he wrote on Twitter.

In an earlier statement, he said, “I now believe that every Nigerian adult at home or abroad should join a political party. Our political parties will not improve solely through external pressure. Change must also come from within. It’s hard to improve a club or party you don’t belong to. If I believe this, then I must also practice it.

The SDP is one of the main political parties in Nigeria, but not as influential as the two most influential parties: the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

PREPARING TO VOTE IN 2023

Mr Peterside, who heads the non-governmental group Anap Foundation, said he set up Go Nigeria as an initiative of Snap Foundation, to actively engage Nigerian youth in recent months with the aim of convincing as many people as possible. them to register, take their voter cards and get ready to vote in the 2023 general election.

“I am excited about the possibility of many more young Nigerians becoming politically active by the 2023 general elections and what this portends for Nigeria,” he said.

“More and more young people have come back to see me since, to tell me that they registered online for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and have done their biometrics so they expect to get their PVCs back soon. Others complained about barriers and frustrations surrounding biometric capture (in particular) at some INEC centers; this should be monitored and escalated if necessary.

“Some other young people, however, point out that they want to go beyond collecting PVC and actually get involved in party politics, but outside of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). They argue that choosing between the two major political parties is akin to choosing between “the devil and the big blue” (my sincere apologies to APC/PDP members who are lawyers for GoNigeria and the many other good people at APC /PDP who are themselves victims of sponsorship)”.

He said most Nigerians are deeply concerned about the country’s high inflation and high unemployment rate, and also fear for their lives due to the deteriorating security situation.

“Unfortunately, the bad economy worsens the security situation and vice versa. It is also impossible to separate the economy from the politics. Perhaps many of us have mistakenly focused on the economy for too long?”

STUDYING POLITICAL PARTIES

In choosing a party, Mr Peterside said he was influenced by recent data which confirms that more than 40% of Nigerians disapprove of the APC and the PDP. He said he commissioned a study of the other 16 registered political parties with a view to joining one of them.

He scored them in seven broad areas, which seemed relevant:

1) The party manifesto – how relevant is it for Nigeria at this time?

2) The quality of the national leadership of the Party.

3) My own judgment of acceptability at the local/party neighborhood level.

4) The commitment and willingness of the Party leadership to practice internal democracy.

5) Are the doors of the larty really open to young Nigerians who wish to claim their country?

6) Are the doors of the party really open to female leaders, or is it yet another macho male enclave?

7) Is this a place where I really feel welcome?

“The above 7 indications, after careful consideration, have led me to classify the 16 registered political parties apart from the APC and the PDP.

“Of course, there is a tremendous amount of work to be done before the political party I join can become the natural challenger to the APC and PDP, but like a good party member, I am ready to roll up my sleeves. and to work hard to help elevate this political party across the country,” he said.

“After reaching this milestone, I will encourage other Nigerians to similarly seek membership and proactive participation in political parties where they will feel welcome and which meet certain established criteria, including priorities that I could have missed.

“For Nigerians who are in favor of restructuring and/or a new Constitution, or even Separation, my plea is that you first think about voting for leaders who are better able to navigate these ‘waters’ as well as in our current “waters”, which include high unemployment, high inflation and general insecurity. The time to sit on the fence is over. We have done it before and see where we are today 2023 must be different.

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