Olu Atuwatse III, the Olu of Warri has charged Nigerians to be thorough and deliberate in their choice of those to lead them in order not to repeat mistakes of the past.
The Warri Monarch who gave the charge in a message titled: “A Call For Peace And Participation In The General Elections” said it was time for Nigerians to show that their voices and votes does matter.
He said that the 2023 general elections have presented a golden opportunity for the people to redirect the affairs of the country in a way that would be beneficial for all.
The Monarch however noted that the only way this could be achieved is for the people, especially the youths, to come out en masse to cast their votes for the right persons.
“For far too long, too many have believed the lie, that our voices don’t matter, and our votes don’t count. This lie has only birthed despair, which steals our ability to create the future we need.
“Apathy can no longer be a choice, just as last minute fire brigade approach, can no longer be our choice.
“We must be thorough and deliberate in our choices, as well as the manner in which we go about it, for our sakes and for the sake of generations to come.
“Young Nigerians, we can only birth change by voting for the leaders who will champion laws, policies, and actions for our peace and progress. Leaders who will choose our collective future over their personal aims and ambitions.
“These elections, will be a turning point in the history of our country, and the youth cannot afford to be mere observers. It is time to become active participants in the affairs and future of our nation,” he stated.
The Warri King however appealed to the people to eschew violence and be orderly as they go about to exercise their franchise on the days of the elections.
While he appealed to the Victors to be magnanimous in victory, he also appealed to those who will lose out to imbibe the spirit of sportsmanship and forge a common front in piloting the affairs of the country.
According to him, “Do all you can by cooperating with law enforcement officers and INEC officials to make polling centres conducive, peaceful, and orderly.
“In becoming the citizen you want to see in others, it comes with the understanding that there will be diverging views and we must not let those views upset our democratic process.
“Those whose preferred candidates are declared the winner, should be sober enough to know that the greater work of good and effective governance has only begun.
“Those whose preferred candidates gather lesser votes, should have the same mind, and be prepared to cooperate, as all hands must be on deck for our joint building of the collective good of our nation.
“Since childhood, we have raised songs that we are the leaders of tomorrow. Well, tomorrow is here, and tomorrow is now. Let us lead with what we have, our votes.
“Let us lead the way to the polls and to the future we want. Let us stand strong having played our part. Then, we will continue building by demanding accountability and good leadership. This is how we will create the Nigeria we want to see: a Nigeria that works for us all.”
Meanwhile, Olu Atuwatse III called on Nigerians to be united and maintain peaceful disposition in the face of the seeming challenges they are faced with presently.
He noted that it was only in an atmosphere of peace and through unity of purpose that these challenges can be surmounted.
“The recent restlessness in Warri and environs over the past weeks have been tough, testing our resilience as a people.
“This same expressions have also been observed in other parts of the country. In times like this, our bond as a community and people is more important than ever, because our unity is far greater than the sum total of our parts.
“My fellow Nigerians, there is strength in drawing together instead of choosing division. There is power in peace, over chaos. We must not allow temporary events to break the peace, stability, and love amongst us as citizens.
“We cannot afford to lose lives, infrastructure, or property any further. Therefore, I implore you to choose peace, for without peace there is no nation,” he appealed.