No fewer than 34,000 National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members, who recently passed out, would be deployed to participate in the forthcoming general elections scheduled for March 28 and April 11, the Director-General of the NYSC, Brig-Gen. Johnson Olawumi, has said.
He also stated that the NYSC had put in place a foolproof strategy to guarantee the safety of corps members taking part in the elections.
Olawumi spoke on Friday in Abuja during a press conference ahead of NYSC Presidential Honours Award ceremony slated for Monday, March 2 which has been approved by President Goodluck Jonathan.
At the briefing, the NYSC DG put the number of corps members that have been mobilised by the scheme since its establishment in 1973 at 2.8 million.
“As at the last passing out, we have 2.8 million (corps members) that have passed through the scheme since its establishment”, he said
According to him, out of the 168,000 corps members that were trained by the Independent National Electoral Commission to participate in the coming elections, 34,000 have passed out and can no longer participate as corps members but as ad-hoc staff.
He said, “We have 168,000 (corps members) that registered for participation in the election. The 2014 Batch A that registered passed out on February 19. Our plan was to use them for the elections; but because of the postponement of the elections, we realised that we can’t use them again as that would amount to breaching NYSC rules.
“They were about 34,000. We wrote to INEC to explain that they would be passing out and that we could not hold on to them. Because they were passing out, it wouldn’t be right for them to participate as corps members. But because they have been trained, we told INEC that if they wish, they could employ them as adhoc staff but they won’t wear NYSC uniform”.