Nigeria’s independent online newspaper, TheCable, has kick-started discussions and debates around the 2015 general election with the Youth-Vote 2015 Blog-Zoners, in partnership with a non-governmental organisation, Spaces for Change.

“Our dream at TheCable is to inspire change through constructive engagement. We do not just want to say there is a problem ─ we also want to say there is a solution,” Mr. Simon Kolawole, Founder and CEO of Cable Newspaper Ltd, said.

“We at TheCable are happy to partner with Spaces for Change to stimulate debate on issues among the youth ahead of the elections. Our youths are stereotyped as having interest only in music and movies. YV2015 Blog-Zone will demonstrate that they are also interested in policy and politics.” YV2015 Blog-Zone is a peer-based network of seven Nigerian bloggers united by friendship-driven and interest-driven civic engagement activities across the web. Because they are popular peer leaders, respected voices, visible impact-makers and online crowd-pullers, BlogZoners are drivers of civic learning, applying their digital capabilities and influence to deepen democratic participation and youth voter engagement ahead of the 2015 elections.

Drawn from all of Nigeria’s vast geo-political units, YV2015 Blog-Zoners exploit the shifting landscape of media and communications in which youth are central actors, to provoke peer conversations and democratic debates grounded in actual contexts and priorities of the youth populations across the country. They capitalise on the potential of the learning opportunities available through online resources and networks to imbue young voters with the confidence to directly engage political office aspirants, demanding answers to questions that matter to the youth: how they will create jobs, tackle corruption in the oil sector, improve learning infrastructure and educational standards, and bring about developmental and economic progress to all Nigerians.

The YV2015 Blog-Zoners are: Tope Fasua (business/financial analyst, Abuja), Gimba Kakanda (writer/literary artist, Abuja), Bucky Hassan (public policy analyst, London, UK), Ruona Agbroko-Meyer (columnist/journalist, London, UK), Samuel Diminas (petroleum geoscientist, Houston, USA), Soni Akoji (pharmacist, Abuja) and Victoria Ibezim-Ohaeri (human rights lawyer and researcher, Lagos).

The first article in the series, by Victoria Ibezim-Ohaeri, is titled “Why we must act now”. Read more at: 2015 Elections Debate.

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