YOUTH Initiative for Advocacy, Growth and Advancement (YIAGA), also known as YIAGA Africa, a Nigeria-based nonprofit organisation founded in 2007 has marked its 13 years of activism, community organising and democracy promotion as well as sustained advocacy for participatory and representative democracy.
The nonprofit organisation engages in youth engagement, promotion of democratic governance, human right, anti-corruption, advocacy and policy research.
In a press statement signed by the executive director of the group, Samson Itodo, who revealed that the group started from a student association at the University of Jos, but today, YIAGA-Africa is evolving as a powerful movement of active citizens and change-makers who are positively disrupting the political space and pushing the needle on democratic accountability and governance in Africa.
According to the director, “this was made possible through purposeful leadership, dedicated and hardworking staff, strong organisational governance practices, stakeholder support and a culture of learning and reflection.
The group appreciates all partners, friends, mentors and members of their community for the solidarity, support, guidance and unshaken faith in their dreams and the promise of democracy, describing them as their greatest asset.
“As we turn 13, we are reminded that our vision of a democratic Africa where citizens assert their sovereignty beyond voting during elections is far from being achieved. Although citizen satisfaction with democracy is dwindling, we are emboldened by their continued preference for and commitment to democracy as exemplified by the courage and resilience against poor governance, shrinking democratic space and depreciating quality of elections.
“We commit to harness this resilience in our quest to fix the fractured relationship between state and society. Democracy must deliver development to the people and it begins with fixing our elections, recruiting high-quality public leaders, strengthening democratic institutions and empowering citizens to hold public leaders to account.
“As we look to a future defined by intentionality, resilience and civic activism, we count on your support, partnership and solidarity,”Itodo declared.