He said this has become imperative because the APC won’t have the widespread popularity and instant name recognition of President Muhammadu Buhari to call upon in future elections.
Osinbajo stated this when he received a delegation of the APC National Youth Lobby Group on Monday, August 16, 2021.
The APC youth wing were at the Presidential Villa to present the report of the party’s Youth Conference in June.
Osinbajo said: “This lobby group will need to deal with the issue of inclusion at the grassroots first.
“Today, the APC can win elections, why not, we have a very popular president who can control significant votes, we have partners everywhere.
“Whereas, in the coming years, when we do not have such a political leader who is as popular as the president, you are going to need to do the hard work. We can’t assume that the votes will all come in.”
Speaking on the role of APC youths, Osinbajo said: “I think that your group is more relevant today than ever before because you are not only representing young people but you have the energy to make sure that this party actually works for all Nigerians.
“One of the great opportunities that we have is that we have young people like yourselves who are interested enough in politics. All of you already have shown your capacities in various ways, those who are in government have shown that they can do stuff.
“So, the next hard work now is how to get the younger people in our communities, in our society into this party and to see themselves as part of this party, in their hundreds of thousands, in their millions, that is the next thing to do. I hope that you will apply your resources and energy to do this.”
Earlier in his presentation, the leader of the APC National Youth Lobby Group, Barrister Ismail Ahmed, thanked Osinbajo for being a consistent voice and supporter of youths regardless of political affiliations, but appealed for more youth integration in the affairs of the party across all levels.
According to Ahmed, “You have always been an advocate for young people. We want you, sir, to be vociferous this time around. Please be our voice, be our advocate and champion in everything that you will be doing both in government and in the party.
“This party (APC) is ours. But how we will do as leaders tomorrow depends on how well we are trained as followers, today.”
Some of those who attended the meeting were the Special Adviser to the President on Political Affairs, Sen. Babafemi Ojudu; Special Adviser to the President on Infrastructure, Mr. Ahmad Zakari, and many youth leaders across the party including Hon. Asuquo Ikpenyong, Mr. Hakeem Shagaya, Dr. Etin Osa, Ms. Fatima Kakuri, Mr. Kabir Aregbesola among others.