The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, says he would like to see a constitutional amendment that will make it a duty for the citizen to vote, rather than a right.
He made this statement on Tuesday at the 6th Babatunde Raji Fashola (BRF) Gabfest held in Lagos while reacting to the perceived increase in Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) collection and what should motivate the citizens to get involved in voting their representatives into elective offices.
Fashola insisted that no system was perfect, adding that he does not subscribe to the notion that the Nigerian situation was hopeless.
“Democracy is not divine,” said the minister who stressed the need for people to continue to build. “It’s a manmade idea – created by men… democracy is not perfect and so, must be constantly modified.”
The former governor of Lagos State also spoke about different arms of government and how much influence they wield in shaping the nation.
“The local government is the most important government. Let us pay attention to the local government… because we all seem to be fixated on who becomes the president,” he said.
The hybrid event themed ‘What are we voting for’ started with a panel discussion centred on the qualities of the next set of leaders Nigerians should look out for.
Six panellists garnered from various fields and endeavour spoke extensively on governance and also provided constructive insight into nation-building and the 2023 elections.
The annual event, conceived as part of efforts targeted at creating a platform for the active involvement of the youth in Nigeria’s future, is an activity lined up to celebrate the 59th birthday of the minister.