Youth Participation in the Electoral Process and Electoral Violence in Nigeria:  The Role of NGOs in Mitigation Process

                                    1Oluwaseun Olanrewaju

            1Academics Stand Against Poverty (West Africa), Ikorodu, Lagos, Nigeria.

Corresponding Author’s E-mail: oluwaseunolanrewaju@asapwestafrica.org

Abstract

Electoral violence is an abysmal but constant feature of the political configuration in Nigeria. Sadly, the youths play a prominent role in the circle of electoral violence. This study adopts qualitative method and utilized primary data to examine the roles of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in election violence mitigation in Nigeria. Data were gathered from the NGOs that participated in the study. The NGOs are; Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND), Community Initiative for Enhanced Peace and Development (CIEPD), West Africa Network for Peace building (WANEP), Action Aid Nigeria (AAN), and CLEEN Foundation (CLEEN).Findings reveal that NGOs have made significant efforts towards mitigating electoral violence, however there exists a yearning gap between their efforts and the achievements recorded over the years. Using critical theory as its theoretical framework, this study emphasizes that the election violence mitigation strategies NGOs adopt are incomprehensive and lack the depth required to fundamentally addressing the complex and interrelated root causes of electoral violence in the Nigerian context. Significantly, it is imperative for NGOs to adopt a holistic approach that will comprehensively address the interrelated factors that promote youth participation in electoral violence.

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