President Muhammadu Buhari has appealed to the youths not to eye his seat in the coming 2019 general elections.
The President made the appeal on a light note while signing the ‘Not Too Young To Run’ bill at the Aso Rock Council Chamber, Abuja on Thursday.
While he congratulated the youths on the feat, which he described as a “formidable legacy”, he told them to postpone their ambitions till after 2019.
He said, “I am confident each one of you will transform Nigeria in your own way – whether through media, agricultural enterprise, economists, engineers, or as lawmakers in your States or at Federal levels, or as State Governors – and even someday, as President. Why not?
“But please, can I ask you to postpone your campaigns till after the 2019 elections”.
He, however, urged the youths not to relent in their efforts to impact the nation in whatever way possible.
According to him, the signing of the bill is only a starting point which presents them with an opportunity to make their marks on the nation’s political space.
“You may all know that the Bill I just assented now becomes an Act of the National Assembly.
“Thus, it may be tempting for you to think of this as the end of the journey. However, it is only the beginning; there is still a lot of work ahead, towards ensuring that young people take full advantage of the opportunities provided not only by this constitutional amendment but also through Nigeria’s boundless prospects,” he said.
With the passage of the new bill, the age limit for running for Presidency will now be reduced from 40-35 and 30-25 for the House of Representatives as well as the State Houses of Assembly.
The age limits for Senators and Governors were, however, not reduced – a development which the president says would have to be addressed in the future.
He said, “Eligible age for aspirants for members of the State Houses of Assembly will be reduced from 30 to 25 years; eligible age for aspirants for members of the Federal House of Representatives will be reduced from 30 to 25 years; and eligible age for aspirants for Office of the President, will be lowered from 40 to 35 years.
“Surprisingly, the age limits for Senators and Governors was not reduced, as originally proposed by the sponsors of this Bill. This is an issue that may need to be addressed going forward”.