Anto Lecky: Influential people must champion voter participation with their platforms

Author:
Idris Shehu

Munirat ‘Anto’ Lecky, former BBNaija star, has called on influential Nigerians to use their platforms to encourage voter participation during elections.

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Anto spoke on Thursday while addressing the topic ‘Occupy Your #OfficeOfTheCitizen: Make We Talk Election Mata!’ during a virtual panel discussion tagged ‘Thursday Talks’.

The virtual conversation, a monthly programme focused on engaging thought leaders, was moderated by Tolu Adeleru-Balogun, a journalist and TV host.

The former BBNaija star said celebrities shouldn’t be forced to speak on every topic because “it’s counter-intuitive, you’ll have some people saying the wrong thing”.

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She, however, added that “when it comes to voting every single person of influence — not only celebrities, CEOs — everyone should be saying something”.

“There are some people who don’t have the gumption to stand up and talk on some topics for, and you shouldn’t bully them. I don’t think we should make every single celebrity talk about what they don’t know; it’s counter-intuitive, you’ll have some people saying the wrong thing,” Anto said.

“But I do believe when it comes to voting. It is your right and responsibility as a citizen. I know some people won’t talk about certain topics, but when it comes to voting, every single person of influence — not only celebrities, CEOs — everyone should be saying something.”

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On his part, Demilade Robert, a photographer, said the electorate must be properly educated on the consequence of their actions during elections, adding that “rigging can only happen if there are no votes to count”.

“My stand with election is that the electorate needs to be informed on the importance of carrying out their duty as the electorate. It’s easy to say votes don’t count. But anybody saying such should explain to me why they think so,” he said.

“Because if votes don’t count, then why do we have elections? Why do politicians try to buy votes? If all these are happening, how do you still think that votes do not count? Rigging can only happen if there are no votes to count. Nigerians need to start thinking.”

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