June 12: Continue to support democracy, Tinubu tells Nigerians

All Progressives Congress (APC) National Leader, Sen. Bola Tinubu, has advised Nigerians to continue working to improve on democracy for the growth of the country.

Tinubu gave the advice on Friday in his Democracy Day message with the theme, ‘June 12: A milestone for democracy’.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that June 12 is celebrated annually to commemorate the annulment of June 12 Presidential election.

According to the APC national leader, we must keep and nurture democracy, not for its own sake, but for ours.

He said that democracy day and its commemoration must not descend into empty ritual and that Nigerians must continue to work to entrench and improve on it.

“We must continue to be vigilant and keep watch over our democracy and ward off those who may want to draw us back toward a dimmer period.

“Nigerians deserve congratulations and commendation for their investment in democracy and for how far we have come.

“However, we equally must warn and remind ourselves how far we must go,” he said.

Tinubu noted that many people who fought for democracy and the June 12, 1993 elections changed the political climate in the country.

ALSO READ: June 12: Buhari has shown readiness to embrace democratic ethos, says Akeredolu

He commended the patriots who fought for democracy saying, planting the seedlings of democracy required much toil and sacrifice.

“Dr Beko Ransome Kuti, late Gani Fawehinmi, Baba Omojola, late Pa Rewane, late Pa Enahoro, Baba Ajasin, Pa Adesanya and Baba Adebanjo.

“Others are Prof. Wole Soyinka, Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi, Femi Falana, members of the civil society groups and student activists all fought hard and struggled mightily on everyone’s behalf.

“Many laid down their lives that we may have this brighter moment.

“Many people whom we do not know also lost their life or climb to bring this moment to pass.

“On this day, we duly honour such patriots. We remember them and commend their sacrifice,” the APC leader said.

Tinubu further said that marking democracy showed that the day or patriots are not taken for granted.

“We must keep and nurture democracy, not for its own sake, but for ours,” he said

Tinubu also hailed the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration for its fight against corruption and tolerance of constructive criticism.

He commended Buhari for having the political courage to make June 12 Democracy Day.

“President Buhari, however, realised the import of June 12 and understood that this day more than any other best symbolized our national pursuit of democracy.

“In spite political opposition, Buhari helped set the record straight by making June 12, Democracy Day,” he said.

Tinubu noted that the nation now grappled with COVID-19 and its resultant public health and economic challenges.

“Only a democratic government would have been so informative and open.

“Only a democratic government would have initiated palliatives and worked in a cooperative manner with the states to devise the best possible policies to fit local circumstances,” he said.

Tinubu further stressed that democracy was the best avenue to harness collective abilities in the urgent resolution of these challenges.

He urged people to be thankful to God and remember those who sacrificed to enable the country to advance far on the democratic journey.

“Let us use democracy to win the present battle for national prosperity in all of its forms over poverty.

“The times we face are not the easiest but we have a destiny to reach and a democratic roadmap on how to get there.

“Hand in hand, let us get there together,” he said

Tinubu urged Nigerians to be safe and act with compassion toward one another.

“We must remain vigilant and do even more to elevate freedom of thought and expression.

“I wish all Nigerians a memorable Democracy Day and many more years of enduring democracy,” he said.

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