Event: Love Does Not Win Elections Ayisha Osori on Political Participation in Nigeria


For the twenty-first-century Nigerian, the greatest political paradox is this: how to reconcile increased democratization with an increasingly dissatisfied electorate. Despite the rise and stability of Nigerian democracy, elected officials generally remain unrepresentative of the electorate, especially by age and gender. Elections suggest being more capable of exercising the right to vote, often, only brings citizens to a point where they must choose between the “lesser of two evils”, and the relationship between the elected and the electorate remains more transactional than civic. A traditional response to the narrow pool of representative political leaders has been to rethink political participation away from voting and towards running for office. In many cases, individual citizens decide to become electoral candidates primarily as a way to challenge the status quo. However, such decisions are neither always successful nor easily replicable.

Ultimately, the key questions are: Are voting and running for office the only forms of political participation? Are there non-partisan alternatives for seeking representative leadership? What combinations of partisan and non-partisan political participation are most impactful? What, if any, are practical examples of such synergies?

Ayisha Osori is an Eisenhower Fellow with law degrees from the University of Lagos and Harvard Law School, and an MPA from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Osori is a lawyer and consultant with more than 18 years’ experience in the public and private sectors. She is an expert on governance, gender equality, women’s economic and political participation and ending violence against women. Osori also sits on the board of various organisations in the public and private sector, and is a published author. Her latest book, Love Does Not Win Elections (Narrative Landscape Press, 2017), chronicles her experience contesting the PDP primaries in 2014.

Join Ayisha Osori as she discusses the challenges and opportunities regarding political participation in Nigeria, and as she explores potential strategies for increasing the political participation of women and the youth. Ayisha Osori will also be in conversation with the Editor of The Republic and chair of the event, Wale Lawal

Twitter hashtag for this event: #OsoriRepublic

This is a free event. However, spaces are limited. To attend, guests must register.

12 p.m. to 1 p.m.
Saturday June 30 2018
16 Kofo Abayomi Street
Victoria Island Lagos

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