By Angela Atabo
Yiaga Africa has promised to partner with the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) to provide pro bono legal services for young Nigerians participating in the 2023 electoral processes.
This is contained in a statement jointly signed by Mr Samson Itodo, the Executive Director, Yiaga Africa and Mr Muntasir Adamu, the Chairman, NBA Young Lawyers Forum in Abuja on Wednesday.
“As preparations for the 2023 General Elections begin in earnest, we wish to call on young lawyers interested in specialising in election law to express their interest to join the election law clinic.
“This is a cohort of young lawyers who will provide pro bono legal services to young Nigerian adults participating in the electoral process.
“This also include other young persons with disabilities who require pro bono legal advice as a way of supporting the electoral aspirations of young Nigerian candidates.
“A total of 3,193 election petitions were filed in the general elections conducted between 2003 to 2015,” it said.
Yiaga Africa added: “In the 2019 general elections, a total of 766 petitions were filed which brought the total number of petitions filed to date to 3,959.
“Section 133(1) of the Electoral Act, 2022 clearly states that participation in an election is the condition precedent to presenting an election petition by candidates and political parties.
“The election law clinic is part of the ‘Turn Up Democracy’ project that is being funded by the United Kingdom Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and implemented by Yiaga Africa.
“The project was designed to train the next generation of lawyers who were interested in specialising in election law, deepen the understanding of women and youth aspirants and candidates on the new electoral legal framework.
“It will also provide legal advisory services and support to young and women candidates.
“The E-Law Clinic is driven by a specially designed module informed by both the challenges identified by young men and women who contested in previous elections and the trends in election litigation.”
“Young lawyers who participate in the clinic will receive virtual and physical training on the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022 using a carefully developed curriculum.”(NAN)