Buhari declares June 12 Democracy Day, to honour Abiola, Kingibe

Buhari declares June 12 Democracy Day, to honour Abiola, Kingibe
June 07 00:08 2018

By Ahmed Idris

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday directed that effective 2019, the country’s Democracy Day, marked every May 29 for the past 18 years, should be shifted to June 12 to honour the winner of the 1993 presidential election, Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawole Abiola.

Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Garba Shehu, said in a statement in Abuja that Abiola would now be conferred with the nation’s highest honour, the Grand Commander of the Federal Republic (GCFR).

He said Mr Abiola’s running mate in that election, Ambassador Babagana Kingibe, would be conferred with the second highest honour of the Grand Commander of the Niger (GCON).

Also to receive a GCON is the late Nigeria’s foremost pro-democracy activist, Chief Gani Fawehinmi.

“For the past 18 years, Nigerians have been celebrating May 29th, as Democracy Day. That was the date when for the second time in our history, an elected civilian administration took over from a military government.

“The first time this happened was on October 21st, 1979. But in the view of Nigerians, as shared by this Administration, June 12th, 1993, was far more symbolic of Democracy in the Nigerian context than May 29th or even the October 1st,” the statement said.