The Arewa Youth Assembly (AYA) says it will partner with the National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN) to curtail electoral violence in the 2019 general elections.

Mr Mohammed Salihu, Speaker of AYA made this known in Abuja at the award and turbaning of NYCN President Sukubo Sara-Igbe Sukubo, as the “Sarkin Matasan Nijeriya.’’(Youth leader of Nigeria)

Salihu said the partnership was apt so as to sensitise youths on the dangers of being used as thugs to foment trouble during elections.

According to him, 2019 elections, or any other poll, are not worth losing any youth.

“As we are going into the election year, we know that youths are being used to stir electoral violence.

“It is high time we sensitised the youth to avoid being used by politicians; they take their children abroad while they use the youth as objects of destruction.

“We do not want to lose any youth on account of the elections and that is why the partnership is important to sensitise the youths on electoral violence,’’ he said.

Salihu also called on Nigerians to go back to the old days when people lived together in peace regardless of religion, tribe and ethnicity.

According to him, the AYA, an umbrella body of the 19 northern states and the FCT, is committed to preaching peace, ensuring morality and promoting a corrupt-free society.

He called on Nigerian leaders to stop using religion to tear the country apart.

In his response, Sukubo commended AYA for the award and pledged to work toward curbing violence orchestrated by youths in the country.

Sukubo promised to launch a blueprint in January 2019 in all the 774 local government areas, the 36 states and the FCT to enable the council to solve problems confronting the Nigerian youths.

According to him, political leaders should shun acts capable of dividing Nigerians and encourage values that would unite the nation.

“Our leaders need to set an example for us, but since we are the future leaders, we ought to also set the pace for others,’’ he said.

He also promised to fight drug trafficking and drug abuse that mostly affected the youth and with a view to reducing the menace to the barest minimum.

Sukubo said that youth empowerment would be the focus of his leadership to engage youths meaningfully and prevent them from falling into the wrong `profession’ due to idleness.