A human rights organisation, OurMumuDonDo Movement, has revealed plans to launch a Social Contract Initiative for Nigerians, a programme designed to engage and enlighten the citizens on accountable democracy.
The launch will take place on Monday, January 11, 2019, in Abuja.
Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Friday, Charles Oputa, popularly known as Charly Boy, who is the convener of the movement, said it is aimed at enlightening citizens about Nigeria’s democratic process as well as transfer the ownership of the democratic process to the citizens, thereby enabling them to engender accountable democracy.
He noted that the electorate and voting population must be able to understand and reconstruct their engagement with the democratic process as the “real owners” of government and the Nigerian project, people’s participation and commitment to the electoral and political processes would continue to depreciate.
He said: “As an organization advocating for social change, we believe that for there to be a stable and progressive society, there must be some established norms guiding the relationship between the people and the government of the state.
“These established norms will define mutual obligations between the people and their leaders at the national and subnational levels of government. These mutual obligations will form the nucleus of the agreement that we call the Social Contract.
“The Nigerian Social Contract Initiative, loosely translated as NaWeBeGovernment, is an initiative of the Omudodu Youths Foundation, a.k.a. OurMumuDonDo Movement, designed to enlighten the citizens about Nigeria’s democratic process as well as transfer the ownership of the democratic process to the citizens thereby enabling them to engender accountable democracy.”
Oputa pointed out that Social Contract Initiative would improve citizens’ participation in the democratic process, as well as increase the trust of the electorate in Nigeria’s electoral process.
He stressed that the Initiative is in line with the 2019 elections, and is proposed as a model for reviewing and determining the commitment of politicians and political parties in the Nigerian polity.
“Our Movement, with support from the Ford Foundation and the UK Department for International Development (DFID) (Youth Alive Foundation) embarked on opinion surveys across the country using questionnaires, and also through town hall engagement, to gather information on the knowledge of the social contract among citizens.
“When we started the Nigerian Social Contract Initiative in June 2018, we realized that there was insufficient information on youth and citizens’ knowledge and engagement with the social contract as a tool for promoting good governance in Nigeria.
“This propelled us to conduct a survey to obtain baseline information about citizens’ knowledge of social contract and their level of engagement with government, using available spaces and legal frameworks, to demand accountability and good governance.”