Eminent Nigerians, Wednesday, urged the Federal Government to immediately announce the result of the June 12, 1993 presidential election result and officially declare Moshood Abiola the winner of the election.
The 1993 Presidential election which was presumed to have been won by the late Abiola, who was a candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) is perceived to be fairest election conducted in the history of Nigeria.
The election result was annulled by the then military ruler, Ibrahim Babangida, after most of the result counted showed that Abiola was clearly leading and would win the election.
However, in a programme held by the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC) at Ogba, Lagos, to commemorate June 12, with the theme: ‘The mantra of June 12 Democratic consolidation in Nigeria’, the Federal Government was commended for the honour bestowed on Abiola, but urged to move a step further by declaring him winner of the election and a former president of the country.
Host of the event, Gani Adams, who is the Aare Anakakanfo of Yoruba, said the recent honour bestowed on Abiola by the Federal Government was deserving, but, however added that the Yoruba nation would be more fulfilled if the government pronounced Abiola winner of the election and give him all his dues as a former president.
Adams further lamented that the current state of affairs in the country negate the belief of June 12 which Abiola stood for, stressing that only restructuring of the country could salvage it.
“Our demand now is the declaration of June 12 election result and immediate declaration of Abiola as a former president of Nigeria.
“What is happening across the country is against the spirit of June 12 whose mantra was ‘hope for all’.
“Today, killings and hunger are everywhere; only restructuring of the country can help us. It is a shame that in this age, states still go to Abuja to get federal allocation before they can survive,” Adams said.
Activist Joe Okei-Odumakin, noted that declaring the result of the election and declaring Abiola a former president was the best way to immortalise him, charging the Federal Government to provide good and accountable leadership which was a virtue associated with June 12.
According to her, “We appreciate what the government has done so far, but the befitting way to immortalise him is to declare that election result and declare him a former president of Nigeria.
“We demand declaration of June 12 election result; today, Nigeria is the capital of poverty and hunger is everywhere, what is happening negate what June 12 stands for,” Odumakin said.
Former military governor of Lagos State and founding member of defunct National Democratic Coliation (NADECO), Ndubusi Kanu, said Abiola was a philanthropist who believed in Nigeria and upliftment of the masses.
Kanu commended the Federal Government for
Declaring June 12 Democracy Day and honouring Abiola, but urged present leaders to provide good leadership and be accountable to Nigerians.
National President of Arewa Youth consultative Forum, Yerima Shettima, extolled the virtues of Abiola, and supported the agitation for the immediate restructuring of the country as a solution to the nation’s woes.
The event was attended by pro- democracy activists and leaders.