2023 Elections: Group Seeks To Tackle Voter Apathy With Vote023 Campaign

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Emeka Mba, the founder of Emergent Laboratories, supported by Angela Ochu-Baiye, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Inspired by Jela, has launched an initiative tagged: ‘Vote023,’ a non-partisan incentive-driven voice call campaign to drive Nigerians’ consciousness of civic responsibility.

Vote023, which was launched on Thursday, the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) said, was aimed at influencing behaviour and driving action by providing compelling reasons to participate, and showing Nigerians that the future of the country lies primarily in their decision to become active contributors in the electoral process.

Mba, who is the visioner of Vote023, however, said that some Nigerians who decided to show apathy to the electoral process had their reasons for doing so, but enjoined everyone of voting age to come out en masse to participate in the 2023 general elections, which would usher in the new government in most parts of the country, including at the center.

He said: “Nigerians who do not participate in the electoral process have legitimate reasons for not participating. While most believe, rightly or wrongly, that results are predetermined and their votes do not count, others pull back because of personal safety and security reasons.

“Hence, we are launching Vote023 to correct this voter apathy by creatively sensitising Nigerians and giving them strong reasons to vote in the forthcoming 2023 elections. The objective is to deepen the citizens’ consciousness of their civic obligation and drive more engagement in the voting process.

“This is how it works. You visit Vote023.org and you will see two options- you can call the number in one of the boxes and listen to our pre-recorded non-partisan message in your preferred language reminding you to vote in the upcoming 2023 elections and we would send you an SMS and credit you with N100 airtime instantly. If you input your number or anyone else’s, you or the person will get the same pre-recorded message and receive N100 airtime instantly.”

Also commenting Ochu-Baiye, who is a media consultant and a collaborator in the project, said it was not enough for voters to get their Permanent Voter’s Cards (PVCs) without casting their votes at the polling booth.

Ochu-Baiye stated that the Vote023 Campaign was designed to engender important action of actual voting through strategically placed messaging in different languages and incentivising it for more reception.

“Apart from these pre-recorded non-partisan messages, I also created the theme song titled: ‘The Call’, produced by the renowned Gospelondebeatz of the script, that has been placed on multiple radio stations nationwide to complement other communication efforts and encourage massive voting at the 2023 elections.

“Our goal is to reach over 23 million Nigerians with 23 reasons to vote during the 2023 elections. As we have stressed, this project is not affiliated with any political figure or party. Our emphasis is on principles and data, not parties or persons,” he said.

Gospel Obi, popularly known as Gospelondebeatz, expressed delight to be part of the project and said that the 2023 elections were defining for Nigeria.

Obi explained that when the duo of Angela and Emeka pitched the Vote023 initiative to him, he keyed into it immediately, stressing that Nigeria must get it right with the 2023 general elections.

He, however, said that this could only be achieved through massive participation of the electorate in the forthcoming elections.

The theme song, produced by Gospelondebeatz, would be streaming on Apple Music, Spotify, Soundcloud, Tidal, YouTube, Deezer and other platforms.

Mba and Ochu-Baiye further called on well-meaning Nigerians to support the self-funded campaign for sustainability and enhanced impact, adding that the initiative is essential to protect Nigeria’s future.

Vote023 Campaign is supported by The Group 8 Limited stations- Urban96 Radio, Correct F.M, Soundcity Radio, Access 24- and a host of other media partners who has keyed into the vision of encouraging increased voting at the 2023 elections., the group said.

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