Obasanjo Opposes Age Limits For Political Positions
Obasanjo said there should be no barrier for anyone to lead the country, as long as the person has been chosen by the citizens.
The former president said this while commenting on the proposition by the National Assembly to reduce the age of Presidential candidates from 40 to 35; Governor 35 to 30; Senators 35 to 30; House of Reps 30 to 25; House of Assembly 30 to 25.
The former President spoke on Sunday as the guest speaker at an exposition series tagged, “God in my life,” organised by the Torchbearer Society of Archbishop Vining Memorial Church Cathedral, Ikeja, Lagos.
He described the provision as discriminatory against young Nigerians, who had the energy, ideas and other qualities to lead the country to greatness.
According to him, capability and competence, rather than age, should be the qualifications for leadership, recalling that Gen. Yakubu Gowon became military Head of State at the age of 33.
“Quite frankly, if we put minimum age, why are we not putting maximum age? If they put minimum age and then say that even if you are 90, you can be president, because there is no age limit to being president.
“To me, there should be no age limit. Gen. Gowon (retd.) became the Head of State at the age of 33, I became the Head of State at 39.
“If General Yakubu Gowon was able to rule this country at 32, there is no reason why the youths should not be given the chance.
“I believe there should be no age limit; let the people decide,” Obasanjo said.