Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Abiola’s Betrayers Still In Govt – NADECO

National Democratic Coalition on Tuesday said those who connived with the military to annul June 12, 1993, presidential election reportedly won by business mogul, Chief MKO Abiola, were still in government.
photo National Democratic Coalition on Tuesday said those who connived with the military to annul June 12, 1993, presidential election reportedly won by business mogul, Chief MKO Abiola, were still in government.
Chairman, NADECO, Rear Admiral Ndubuisi  Kanu (retd.), stated this during the 19th anniversary of June 11, 1994 Epetedo Declaration by Abiola.
Kanu, in a speech entitled ‘19 Years After the Epetedo Declaration: Where is the Sovereign Power of the People?’, said, “Many who connived with the clique in those debasing and disenfranchising years are in power today, even masquerading as champions of democracy.
“Such people include those who chaired Abiola’s winning party, the Social Democratic Party, now today sitting atop party’s board of trustees.
“Some reign at the pinnacle of the legislative arm of government in Abuja. There are numerous others in the arms of government and even among the progressives, who ought really to search their conscience, if the survival, well-being and progress of Nigeria is truly in their agenda.”
He restated the call for a Sovereign National Conference, saying the conference remained the panacea for the country’s socio-economic and political development.
He said the 1999 Constitution was imposed on Nigerians in utter negation of their sovereignty.
Another NADECO leader, Chief Ayo Opadokun, urged pro-democracy groups to do more to liberate the country.
He said, “We need to do more than we are doing. We need to get ourselves organised in our streets, wards and various levels and constitutionally engage those in power that have turned us into servitude.
“This is a country that exports what it does not have and imports what it has. Nigeria has oil, yet the leaders are importing oil for domestic use. Statistics available to me is that over 18 million graduates in Nigeria are jobless. This should not be if those in government could block wastage and eradicate corruption.”
A  lawyer,  Fred Agbeyegbe, spoke on the need and modalities for an SNC, saying the conference was the business of Nigerians.
Also, Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State described the proscribed poll as a watershed in the annals of the country.
He said the supreme price paid by Abiola, could not be forgotten.
In a related development, the Osun State government has declared Wednesday (today) a public holiday in commemoration of the anniversary.
A statement by the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Chief Sunday Akere, on Tuesday, said symposia, rallies and a documentary on the life of Abiola would mark the event.
Meanwhile, Nobel Laureate,  Prof.   Wole Soyinka, has said May 29, which the Federal Government branded Democracy Day, lacks the credibility of the June 12 presidential election, won by Abiola.
Soyinka stated this in a statement on the 20th anniversary of the June 12 election on Tuesday.
He said, “We need to remind ourselves what June 12, 1993 represents. It is neither mere date, nor sentiment. It is simply – Human Spirit. What a futile undertaking it is then, when some individuals attempt to deny or crush it. Yet it was the power of this very spirit that brought such out of relegation or obscurity, even from the jaws of death, and bestowed upon them relevance and prominence.
“What June 12 possesses is exactly what May 29, or any other day, lacks. The former was a spirit of unified purpose, the latter simply an egotistical appropriation of the gift of the former.  June 12 embodies unity of purpose, equity and justice, the manifestation of the sovereign will of a people. It remains forever a watershed of Nigerian history, no matter what the future holds.
“I urge you to try a simple experiment: narrate the story of May 29 to a child and watch his or her reaction. On that day – that child would concede – an individual was installed as a compromise president following a compromise election. So, what is new?”
Soyinka added, “Now move on to unfold the tapestry of June 12. Run your finger along its traceries of citizen resolve, upheavals, of individual and group heroisms, of sacrifices and martyrdoms, the timeless narrative of human resilience. Watch the difference in that child’s responses.  Yet, even the beneficiaries of that day persist in their futile effort to kill the date and supplant it with another. Why should we be surprised?
It is that unprincipled game of substitution that they have carried even to subsequent elections, substituting names of the rightful winners of elections with others who were never even in contention. “It is this same mental compulsion that moves them to attempt to rob even a calendar date of its significance, its history, its potential for character formation and sense of national formation – and transformation.”