The only Social Democratic Party (SDP) member in the National Assembly, Hon. Tajudeen Adefisoye has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for honouring
the late Chief MKO Abiola by declaring June 12 as democracy day in Nigeria as against the hitherto May 29.
The Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Army however expressed regret that the predecessors of Buhari did not give MKO Abiola his deserved honour as the acclaimed winner of June 12, 1993 election despite the supreme price paid by the late business mogul for the enthronement of democracy in Nigeria.
This position was taken by Adefisoye in his democracy day speech that was made available to newsmen on Friday. The lawmaker however commended the togetherness spirit of Nigerians when they rose above ethnic and religious considerations to cast their votes for Abiola on June 12, 1993. He also adjudged the annulled June 12 election as the freest and fairest in the nation’s political history.
“Today marks the 27th year that Nigerians rose above ethnic and religious considerations on June 12, 1993 to vote for Chief Moshood Kashimowo Olawale Abiola (MKO) in an election that was globally adjudged the freest and fairest in the political history of Nigeria.
Unfortunately, the mandate given to MKO Abiola by Nigerians was wickedly annulled by the military junta of General Ibrahim Babangida.
“Surprisingly, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo for reasons best known to him chose not to accord MKO Abiola any recognition until he left office as president in 2007. In the same regrettable progression, two other presidents that came after Chief Olusegun Obasanjo also manifested indifference on the issue of MKO Abiola and June 12”.
Adefisoye however commended President Mohammamadu for ending the years of mindless injustice on the issue of June 12 1993 election. He also described Abiola as the symbol and martyr of democracy in Nigeria. He added that the nation could not have had May 29, 1999 without the political event of June 12, 1993 that preceded it.
“But it is important to state that Chief MKO Abiola purchased the 21 year old democracy being enjoyed in Nigeria till date with his own life. This is without doubt the biggest sacrifice that any patriotic citizen could have made for his nation.
“Chief Abiola remains the symbol and martyr of democracy in Nigeria. Notwithstanding the number of frustrating years of failure to recognize MKO Abiola as the winner of June 12,1993 election; the needful was eventually done by President Mohammadu Buhari who satisfied the yearnings of millions of Nigerians on the issue.
“The president has in the interest of fairness and justice conferred a posthumous national award of GCFR on Chief Abiola and also recognized June 12 of every year as democracy day. This act of recognition reminds one that no matter how fast a lie might travel, truth is assuredly positioned to catch up and overtake it someday”.
Meanwhile, Adefisoye has urged the federal government to renovate the Abuja National Stadium that was named after Chief Abiola last year. He also advised that the family of Abiola be compensated for the injustice done to their patriarch. The federal lawmaker however attested to the fact that President Buhari has proven his love for justice, fairness and equality with the honour done to the late Abiola.
“Without doubt, President Muhammadu Buhari has proven himself as a lover of fairness, justice and equality with the recognitions he had already accorded the late Chief MKO Abiola. I am also certain that the spirit of the late business mogul will continued to get pleased with President Buhari.
“However, the President Buhari could also move a step further to compensate the family of Chief Abiola for the injustice done to their patriarch. It is also important that the National Stadium in Abuja that is already named after Chief Abiola by President Buhari be renovated to an acceptable standard that will befit the name of the late Pillar of Sports in Africa”.
While frowning at the failure of
General Babangida to have thought it necessary to apologize to Nigerians for the annulment of June 12 election; Adefisoye however waxed philosophical on the actions taken by President Buhari on June 12 and MKO Abiola.
“It is regrettable that IBB and his co-travelers that truncated the dream of returning Nigeria in 1993
have never thought it necessary till today to apologize for the crime committed against millions of citizens that willingly voted for Chief Abiola.
“One thing that is not negotiable in life is the fact that those that give honors to others will definitely be honoured in return. In the same vein, those that are quick to suppress truth, fairness and justice cannot perpetually escape the consequential backlash of at least one of the three wrongs.
“President Mohammadu Buhari has given deserved honour and recognition to the late Chief MKO Abiola and he will continued to be remembered for good so long as the day is being observed as holiday in Nigeria. As for other that failed to address the injustice done to Abiola, posterity will continue to judge the deeds of everyone,” added Adedisoye.