Not Too Young To Run; Not Old Enough To Retire?



History was made yesterday as President Muhammadu Buhari signed the Not Too Young To Run bill reducing the age barrier preventing youths from contesting for elective positions in the country. The move was greeted with a deafening ovation from both the APC and every opposition party in the country.


The bill brings down the age qualification for the  Presidential seat from 40 years to 30 years; House of Representatives from 30 years to 25 years; and State House of Assembly from 30 years to 25 years. However, it seems the age limits for gubernatorial and senatorial positions are higher that those for the presidency, which the the lawmakers reduced from 40 years to 35 years.

According to our source, Buhari hinted that, “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.”

The bill was signed yesterday 31/05/18 at the Council Chamber of the Aso Rock Villa, and witnessed by the NTYTR group of under-35 young Nigerians drawn from across the country, led by Cmr. Samson Itodo.

While the Bill sets a limit for qualification to run, it fails to address the peak age for retirement. Or is this not equally as important? Moreover, the bill will not have any meaningful impact if the youths fail to seize the initiative to join political parties and get involved in the selection process.

Moreover, the bill will not have any meaningful impact if the youths fail to seize the initiative to join political parties and get involved in the selection process.

This is crucial as lack of internal democracy in the political parties remain the bane of our nascent democracy.

In view of how ex-governors have made the senate their retirement home where they enjoy dual benefits in form of salaries and pension as a retired governor, would it not have served Nigeria better if there's a retirement age for public office holders? 

God bless Nigeria.

By Onwordi Ngozi Fortune

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