Reps Call For Nigeria’s Highest Honour (GCFR) On MKO Abiola, Want June 12 Declared Democracy Day
The House of Representatives on Tuesday called on the Federal Government to immortalise the acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, Moshood Abiola, popularly known as MKO.
The lower chamber of the National Assembly also resolved that late Mr. Abiola be conferred with posthumous Grand Commander of the Order of the Federal Republic (GCFR), in recognition of his sacrifice and contributions to the unity and development of Nigeria and Africa.
This emanated from the adoption of a motion under matters of urgent public importance, sponsored by Sanni Zoro (Jigawa-APC).
Moving the motion, Mr. Zoro said that a vacuum was created following the death of Mr. Abiola.
“It is worthy to remember him always as a Nigerian who touched lives more than any other person in his life time.
“Abiola also contributed in ensuring religious harmony by building bridges between faith organisations in the country,’’ he added.
Mr. Zoro argued that apart from being acclaimed winner of June 12, 1993 presidential election by polling eight million out of the 14 million votes cast, Mr. Abiola contributed immensely to the political development of the country.
“It will not be a novelty to bestow the GCFR on someone who is not a president of the country.
“Former President Shehu Shagari bestowed the same honour on late Chief Obafemi Awolowo in 1983.
“I believe that we should immortalise MKO Abiola by conferring on him this highest honour in the country,” he said.
Contributing, Anayo Nnebe (Anambra-PDP) urged the federal government to declare June 12 of every year as Democracy Day in the country.
According to him, it was a day that Nigeria witnessed the most credible election.
“June 12, 1993 election had more significance for the country’s democracy compared to May 29, which is currently being celebrated as Democracy Day.
“The annulment of June 12 is an act of irresponsibility and recklessness by the then military regime.
“I want to add that June 12, should be declared a national holiday to reflect issues that transpired; It should be seen as a national issue and not regional one,” Mr. Nnebe stated.
Similarly, a member representing Epe Federal Constituency of Lagos, Wale Raji, urged the federal government to declare the result of the annulled election by announcing late Abiola the posthumous President-elect.
Ruling on the motion, the Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, referred the matter to the House Committee on Legislative Compliance to ensure enforcement of the resolution.