June 12 to replace May 29 has Nigeria’s democracy day
June 12 will now be nigeria's
President Muhammadu Buhari in a surprise move declared June 12 Nigeria’s Democracy Day’. He also awarded Nigeria’s highest honour, Grand Commander of the Federal Republic, GCFR, to the winner of the 1993 election, late businessman Moshood Kashimawo Abiola.
The election, adjudged to be the freest and fairest up till that year, in Nigeria’s history was annulled by the military junta headed by Ibrahim Babangida, plunging Nigeria into a five-year political crisis.
In the press statement, Abiola’s running mate, Ambassador Babagana Kingibe will also be honoured with Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger, the second highest honour. And so will Chief Gani Fawehinmi, the indefatigable lawyer and senior advocate who campaigned for the actualisation of June 12 up till Abiola’s death in 1998. The event will hold on June 12.
From 2019, June 12 will now replace May 29, the day the military handed over to civilians in 1999 as Nigeria’s democracy day.
June 12, 1993 was the day millions of Nigerians expressed their Democratic will in the freest, fairest & most peaceful elections since our Independence. That the outcome of that election was not upheld by the then military Govt does not detract from its democratic credentials. pic.twitter.com/MIyrMJ9Q1U
— Muhammadu Buhari (@MBuhari) June 6, 2018