The Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has declared that one thing that President Muhammadu Buhari would be respected for, was the recognition of the June 12 and its rightful placement in the country’s national dairy as the rightful ‘Democracy Day’.
Fayemi added that it is more rewarding that the symbol of the June 12 struggle, Chief Moshood Kashimawo Abiola, winner of the June 12, 1993 election whom the previous administrations had refused to recognize, has been duly acknowledged by the President as indeed, the indisputable winner of the election.
The governor, in a statewide broadcast on Friday, marking the Democracy Day said: “He (Buhari) did not stop there, he also awarded, posthumously, the highest honour in the land, generally conferred on presidents, the award of the Grand Commander of the Federal Republic (GCFR), on him.
“This symbolic gesture has provided psycho-social healing for the people who sacrificed, including their lives, for the enthronement of democracy.
“The declaration of June 12 as our National Democracy Day, therefore, means for me, a significant and courageous move to further enculturate accountability even about knotty and unresolved historical issues of national importance. One, therefore, has to commend the president for this historical righting of a wrong past.”
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Fayemi added that as one of the protagonists of the June 12 Struggle himself, that he felt fulfilled and appreciated the recognition granted the day by the present administration.
Fayemi said the regime of Gen. Sani Abacha initially construed to be a corrective one to promptly conclude the transition process truncated by the Babangida junta before it became violently truculent and embarked on scorched earth destruction of pro-democracy figures.
Reeling out the significance of June 12, Fayemi added: “For example, the processes that led to the fielding of Basorun MKO Abiola and Ambassador Babagana Kingibe was a major milestone in our walk to a nation where religion did not signpost our electoral decision. Both presidential candidate and his running mates were Muslims.
“Even though Abiola was a Yoruba man from Abeokuta Ogun State, he defeated his National Republican Party’s rival, Alhaji Bashir Tofa in his Kano state base. This greatly showed that the idea of tribal bloc voting did not play a strong role in the election. So, a new nation was in the womb of time, waiting to be born until the midwife did the unthinkable”.
Fayemi saluted those behind the formation of National Democratic Coalition (NADECO, like Chief Adekunle Ajasin, Pa Alfred Rewane, Anthony Enahoro, Abraham Adesanya, Chief Bola Ige, Chief Arthur Nwankwo, Senator Ayo Fasanmi, Chief Olu Falae, Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi, Air Cmdr Dan Suleiman (rtd), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Chief Olusegun Osoba and others over the role I June 12 struggle.
He stated: “The greatest take away from June 12 is that of the possibility of a new Nigeria where our so-called fault lines would no longer matter as our best lines.”
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