UTILIZING THEATRE AND DRAMA FOR CIVIC AND VOTER EDUCATION

As part of CAPP’s objective of empowering people in the grass root to demand for accountability and good governance, the organization together with Global Rights and DFID through theater and drama educate the Yangoji community on how to protect their mandate.

Yangoji is a rural community in Kwali Area Council of Abuja.

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Just like other communities in Nigeria, money still plays a vital role in the political lives of the people as corrupt politicians give cash bribes to the electorates and expects to get the people’s mandate in return.

CAPP working with the community was able to pass the massage through drama and dance performance as the actors and actresses were all member of the community, at the same time, CAPP utilize CBOs from the community (Pnaboni Dance Troupe) this further reinforce community ownership of the process. The mapping of the various CBOs and groups was done with the help of the community leader the “Hakimi” and his traditional council. The contribution of the members of the community were such that, as the President of CAPP rightly said in his opening remarks at the venue of the performance:

“Barely midway into the rehearsal process, they (the people) has so interiorized the concept that they simply took over and started adding scenic, musical and symbolic embellishment that brought great value added to the end product. In the true sense of the word, the process had become their thing. They owned the drama!”

The ownership of the process was also reflected in the title of the play, ‘Bana Sai Mun Yi’ meaning, ‘This time, we must make it’.

The awareness created by the event is such that, people in the community now understand that power actually resides with them (people) but first the need to participate in the electoral process by getting registered, and vote before they can protect their mandate. CAPP acting as a catalyst only spur the community into action by stimulating their consciousness politically and this created awareness to the extent that they can now demand accountability from elected official in their community.

CAPP believe in community ownership of change process in the places we work as this is the best way of sustaining the program when the funding stops coming, the people will innovate means of replicating the strategy in other spheres like health, education, etc.

The community outreach through theatre and drama is both entertaining and educative therefore with minimum resources we achieve maximum impact. The plays speaks directly to the situation of the community in the language they understand.Image

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