FixPolitics has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to order the closure of all tertiary institutions before the 2023 general elections.
The organisation wants the President to direct the Ministry of Education to temporarily shut the schools from February 22nd to 27th.
FixPolitics noted this would enable undergraduates to travel back to places of residence to exercise their franchise in the February 25 presidential elections.
“The same should apply to the subsequent Governorship and House of Assembly elections scheduled for March 11, 2023,” its statement on Friday reads.
Tertiary institutions are under the supervision of the National Universities Commission, NUC, the National Board for Technical Education, NABTEB, and the National Commission for Colleges of Education, NCCE.
FixPolitics said the Independent National Electoral Commission’s registration exercise in 2022 took place during the prolonged ASUU strike which means the majority of students must have registered.
The group recalled INEC Chairman Mahmood Yakubu’s announcement that students account for 40 percent of the 9,518,188 newly registered voters.
Government should be seen to be doing everything necessary to encourage all eligible citizens to come out and vote on election days, the statement added.
Describing the 2023 election as a defining one, it said the outcome will either produce leaders who have the character, competence and capacity or return “the same old politicians who contributed to bringing Nigeria to its present hobbled state”.
The group commended INEC for twice extending the allotted time to give more opportunities for the collection of Permanent Voter Cards, PVCs.
“It is now incumbent on the federal government to take executive action to ensure that students who have collected their PVCs are not denied the right to vote.”
FixPolitics added that the urgency of the moment demands patriotic and decisive action, reminding President Buhari of his vow to leave behind a legacy of free and fair elections.
Launched in February 2020, the group is a citizens-led research-based movement designed to change and innovate politics in Nigeria and Africa.
The chairperson is Obiageli Ezekwesili, former presidential candidate, former Education Minister and ex-Vice President (Africa) at the World Bank.