Political Apathy in Nigeria

For most Nigerians, especially those who had attained the age of political awareness in 2015, the word ‘Change’ brings back memories. It was the official mantra of the current crop of political leaders in their quest for power. They promised to bring change in all areas of life in Nigeria. Well, they did bring change, albeit in a rather negative and unexpected way.
Six years into their tenure, the state of affairs in the nation has summarily gone from bad to really bad. Insecurity, bad economic policies, violence, and division across ethnic and religious lines have become rampant and increasingly on the high.
As a people, our political fortune rests on our shoulders. It is common knowledge that sovereignty lies with the people. There is a need for change in the leadership of Nigeria. The only way to get change is by going to the polls and exercising our franchise.
Local Governments are essential to political participation and socialization at the grassroots. Elections at this level ensure the regular changes of administration. The change we seek has to start from this level.
Undoubtedly, constant reports of violence, voters intimidation, ballot stuffing, and rigging have deterred many people from exercising their rights. We have to gain strength by turning out together.

The low turnout at the recent local government elections held in Lagos and Ogun state is an example. People would rather stay at home to avoid the violence that comes with elections. Real change cannot be stimulated by cowering and refusing to make our voices heard.
The nationwide protests against unacceptable governance were less than a year ago. Youths vowed to take the law into their hands by voting at the upcoming elections. If we are to get desired change, voter apathy is a problem that needs to be solved quickly.

The Nigerian electoral commission INEC has recently created a portal for continuous voter registration. New voters can register, existing voters can update their voter information. We must, as a matter of urgency, take this seriously. It is our only option to bring about the change we truly deserve.