Former President, Goodluck Jonathan has advised Nigerians politicians to put the country first as one of their priorities ahead of 2023 election.
He urged the political parties, their candidates and supporters to do away with selfish interest while urging young Nigerians to embrace good conduct in the forthcoming election.
Jonathan disclosed that the biggest threat to democracy is no longer the gun, but propaganda, fake news and disinformation.
He stated this in Abuja at the Goodluck Jonathan Foundation 2022 Peace Conference with the theme, “Nation Building: The Role of Peaceful Elections in a Multi-Ethnic Context”.
Jonathan urged young Nigerians to do away with hate speech, saying those advocating for violence and orchestrating fake news were the big threats to democracy.
He added that the interest of every politician should be the people first; saying those who are going into politics to make money should rather go into business.
Jonathan urged religious leaders and civil society to continue to sensitise Nigerians until the country was better.
“We must discourage this issue of hate speech and propaganda that are going on because before this time, we were always afraid of the gun as a threat to democracy.
“But the biggest threat to democracy now that we know is the issue of propaganda, fake news and hate speech. Anybody that is an advocate or vanguard of this is a threat to democracy just like the gun.
“So, our young people should know that we must embrace good conduct that would lead to good elections,” Jonathan said.
“I always say that, first we must have a country and state before you talk about having a president or having a governor. If you destroy the country, then where do you need a president? We don’t need a president.
“So, anybody that is interested in leadership at the level of the president, governor, senator etc you have the biggest stake of protecting the country.
“If you know where nations are in crisis, you will not think about economy and before you know it everything will go down.
“So, those who want to be president, governors and their supporters should first know that we need a nation before whoever you are supporting can emerge as a governor or president,” Jonathan said.