June 12: Buhari confers GCFR posthumous honour on MKO Abiola

Kola Abiola, first son of MKO Abiola receiving his father’s posthumous GCFR honour from President Buhari on Tuesday, June 12, 2018

President Muhammadu Buhari has formally conferred the posthumous award of the Grand Commander of the Federal Republic (GCFR) on the presumed winner of June 12, 1993, presidential election, the late Chief MKO Abiola.

At the event which held on Tuesday, June 12, 2018, at the Presidential Villa, in Abuja, Buhari offered an unreserved apology on behalf of the Federal Government to the family of MKO Abiola, over the annulment of June 12, 1993, poll, presumably won by late Abiola.

The President apologised at the Special National Honours Investiture and award presentation to heroes of June 12, 1993, poll which was annulled by the defunct Ibrahim Babangida regime.

ALSO READ: June 12: It’s impossible to honour Abiola and admire Abacha, his tormentor —Soyinka tells Buhari

He said the decision to hold the event was not to open old wounds but to bury negative sides of June 12 and it ill-feelings, hates frustration and agony.

He, therefore, called on all Nigerians across national divides to accept the decision to correct the annulment of the June 12, 1993, poll in good faith.

“I honestly invite all Nigerians across all our national divides to accept it in good faith. Our action today is to bury the negative sides of June 12, the side of ill feelings, hates, frustration and agony.

“What we are doing is celebrating and appreciating the positive sides of June 12.

“The June 12 which reinstates democracy and freedom, the June 12 that overcome our various divides and the June that produces unity and national cohesion.

“This is the June 12 we are celebrating today and we will nurture it to our next generation

“Accordingly, on behalf of the Federal Government, I tender the national apology to the family of late MKO Abiola who got the highest votes and to those that lost their loved ones in the course of June 12 struggle,’’ he said.

President Buhari asked for minute silence in honour of late MKO Abiola and those that lost lives in the struggle for the actualisation of June 12

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that former President Olusegun Obasanjo tendered an apology for not being present at the event because of his involvement in a book launch outside the country.

Former President Ibrahim Babangida equally tendered a similar apology for his absence because of some prevailing issues touching on his health conditions.

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