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NYSC: Why Corps members are banned from partisan politics




As the controversy surrounding Hannatu Musawa, the Minister of Arts, Culture, and Creative Economy, continues to unfold, a reliable source within the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) headquarters has stepped forward to provide clarity on the matter.

The source, speaking on condition of anonymity, shed light on the specific guidelines governing corps members’ involvement in political roles while serving their mandatory year of national service.

The crux of the matter revolves around whether serving corps members are allowed to simultaneously hold political positions, such as ministerial or commissioner roles, alongside their NYSC service commitments. According to the source, there are no explicit regulations within the NYSC Act or its accompanying bye-laws that prohibit a corps member from assuming a ministerial position. However, the source emphasized that engaging in partisan politics or affiliating with any political party during the service year is a strict violation of the NYSC guidelines.

The NYSC program has long been committed to maintaining a stance of neutrality and non-partisanship among its participants. The prohibition on participating in partisan politics during the service year is designed to ensure that corps members remain focused on their core responsibilities, which encompass areas such as community development, education, healthcare, and various other forms of national service.

While there is no direct prohibition on corps members holding ministerial positions, the source highlighted that these appointments typically involve complex political considerations, including party affiliations. The NYSC has a vested interest in upholding the principles of neutrality and avoiding any form of partisan activities throughout the course of the program.

The NYSC’s commitment to political neutrality is underscored by its aspiration to create an environment in which all corps members, regardless of their individual political beliefs, can engage in constructive service to their nation without any bias or influence. By maintaining this stance, the NYSC aims to ensure that its participants can contribute to the betterment of their communities and the nation at large without becoming entangled in divisive political matters.

The source concluded by stating that the NYSC recognizes the broader political landscape and the realities of appointments to ministerial or commissioner roles, which often involve intricate political considerations. However, the primary message from the NYSC to its corps members remains clear: during the service year, it is essential to prioritize their responsibilities and avoid any involvement in partisan political activities.

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