President Muhammadu Buhari has yet again made another history that would definitely remain on the sands of time by declaring June 12 as the real Democracy Day.
History was made in 1993 when Nigerians after a long agitations and advocacy for Civilian Government came out enmasse on the 12th of June to cast their ballots for the candidates of their choices. While doing that, little did Nigerians knew their hope would be dashed as it turned out to be.
The 1993 election that was described as the most freest and fairest in the history of Nigeria had two contestants: Moshood Kashimawo Olawole Abiola (MKO) of SDP and Alhaji Bashiru Tofa of NRC.
MKO as he was popularly called was a known philanthropist whose welfarism cut across the entire facets of Nigeria Society. His positive hands of fellowship towards Nigeria Supper Eagles were legendary.
Expectedly, Nigerians reciprocated Abiola’s gesture by voting for him and was adjudged as the winner of the June 12, 1993 Presidential election, before the unthinkable happened.
He was denied his mandate by the then military ruler, Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida who called for another election after annulling the one that produced Abiola.
The annulment was strongly opposed to by Nigerians especially the human right activists like Late Chief Gani Fawemi, Barrister Femi Falana, Barrister Mike Igini, Mr. Odumakin, Mrs. Odumakin, Festus Keyamo and many Nigerian Journalists like Adebayo Aboderin and so on.
Let me not bother you with many stories about his arrest and death, what is most important to so many Nigerians is the fact that he laid his life for the present political dispensation. In fact, his death was sinequanon to the present Civilian Government.
Furthermore, since the returned of civil rule in 1999, believers of Nigeria Democracy have continually clamoured and advocated that June 12 be declared as the real Democracy day, a call that had always fell to deaf ears of the past Presidents.
Despite the above position by the past Presidents not to recognize and honour this Hero of Democracy (MKO) for egocentric reasons, so many Nigerians refused to let it go. In the Western part of the country June 12 had always been declared and celebrated as public holiday and Democracy Day to honour the late icon.
Finally, it is my pleasure to appreciate and thank the present government ably led by President Muhammadu Buhari and Professor Yemi Osinbajo for listening to the voices of the well meaning Nigerians, this indeed shows that Baba is now a born again Democrat.
God bless Federal Republic of Nigeria.
– Yahaya Wada