As preparations for the 2015 general elections gather momentum, the Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps, Brig.-Gen. Bamidele Olawunmi, has called on politicians in the country to educate their supporters against attacking corps members participating in the conduct of elections in the country.
He made the call at the NYSC permanent orientation camp in Ede, Osun State, on Monday while speaking with journalists.
He also warned corps members against collecting any form of gratification from politicians or any other person or group apart from their employer – the NYSC.
Olawunmi warned that any corps member, who disobeys the directive would be arrested and handed over to the police for prosecution.
“We are all aware that corps members have been part of electoral process since 2011 and their involvement has brought some credibility to the elections”, he said.
Olawunmi added: “Politicians should talk to their supporters to avoid any form of violence against these corps members. These are young people who have been called to serve their nation and as such they are only contributing their quota to the development of the country. I know Osun State people are peace-loving, they should avoid any form of violence against these youths”.
He noted that since the declaration of emergency rule in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states, the NYSC had moved its orientation camps from the three affected states to ensure security of the corps members.
While assuring corps members of adequate security at the orientation camps and during their service year, the NYSC boss advised them against embarking on unauthorized travels as road accidents have been identified as one of the challenges to corps members’ safety.
He said, “We care so much about your safety and that is why we have put up adequate security at the orientation camps. We also assure you of safety after your departure from the camps.
“We know you are the future of the nation but you also need to assist us by not embarking on unnecessary travels. Don’t travel except it is very important. We have discovered that road accident is one of the challenges to corps members’ security. What you are traveling to look for in Lagos, Abuja and other cities are right there at the camp”.
It would be recalled that in the aftermath of the declaration of President Goodluck Jonathan as winner of the 2011 presidential elections, purported supporters of a particular politician went on a violence spree in the North killing 10 corps members in Bauchi State leading to calls then for the scrapping of the NYSC.