Nigerians of voting age have been challenged to get their Permanent Voters Card (PVC) ready to vote in the 2019 general election, as not doing so will be likened to working against the progress of the country.
Making the call in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, during a courtesy visit to the Alake of Egbaland, His Royal Majesty Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo in his palace, the former CEO of Europe’s first ethnic media satellite and television channel BEN TV, Mentoring Cmdt, Ali Soyode urged all PVC holders to actively go out and vote in the coming elections.
“Having your PVC and not using it is more dangerous than any crime holding us back from progressing as a nation.”
According to him “Nigerians through our participation now have options to elects good leaders that can deliver good governance and be the bridge for Nigeria’s unity. This will make Nigeria better and greater.
“We came in the spirit of uniting our country. I am a citizen of Nigeria born in Katsina of parents from both the North and South of the country.
Nigeria needs a bridge builder; a bridge to better education, good health care, equitable nation and one that will honour the mandate of our constitution as it is presently until amended. We are happy to say, as our elders and Royal Father to see us answering the calls and as one we most honoured,” Soyode added.
The aspirant told the monarch that he was in the palace to continue his nationwide consultation visit to elders, traditional rulers and meeting the grassroots in the country aimed at seeking to hear directly and interacts with them towards his ambition to contest for the office of the President in Nigeria.
Soyode who is also the convener of the fast rising YES Nigeria Movement before partaking in the emergence of other similar movements in Nigeria, was accompanied on the visit by Dr. Mary Manzo, a National Coordinator of YES; Mr. Larry Ijaola (Diaspora); Barr. Fola Raman, South West Coordinator, Mrs Sarah James (Women Dept) amongst others.
Speaking further with the Royal Father, Mr. Soyode said, they were in there to officially inform him of their collective readiness and willingness to participate in strengthening the democracy in the country and becoming a major block come 2019 and contesting for the office of the President.
In his remarks, the Alake commended Soyode for his foresight and dedication to national interest. He said, it is a blessing to Nigeria and for the state to always be first and Soyode held onto that by becoming the first in setting up the first black media channel in Europe.
His tenacity in management, the monarch said, is something Nigeria needs and successes gained for blacks in Britain can be transferred and shared for Nigeria’s development and growth.
The Alake opined, “It is a worthy journey for you now in life. Our prayers are with you. Once you have a dream, it is good to follow the dream.
“You have shown success, you have a track record in your life.
It is not going to be easy. But you have what it takes. Your work has made things easier for us travelling around the world to be respected compared to how it use to be before the advent of BEN TV,”
The Presidential aspirant told the Alake that their YES Nigeria has been going for about a year, concentrating more in the villages by running educational series for the electorates on their voting rights and power of the thumbs or pens for ballot papers.
“It is good to have the PVC, but using it is much better and of greater magnitude to national values desired. There is no need to have a PVC for shelf decoration or identification while leadership demands changes and good governance needed for a better nation where every citizen is treated equally.
“Four million voters are more and stronger than 70 million other registered PVC holders who did not or may not vote. Voters have the upper hands and placed nation where she is presently,” he added.
The Alake is one of the five sections of Egbaland, the others being Oke-Ona, Gbagura, the Owu and Ibara. The Alake of Egbaland, is the traditional ruler of the Egba clan of Yoruba in the city of Abeokuta in south Western Nigeria.