June 12 Movement Group Commends Buhari For Declaration, Request That It Be Added To School Curriculum In Nigeria
Amidst the various sets of reactions that have trailed President Muhammadu Buhari’s declaration of June 12 as democracy day, a group has requested that a subject that will recount the event of June 12 be enlisted in schools’ curriculum in Nigeria.
The June 12 Movement Group which addressed the media via its chairman, Anthony Killa, at Mr. Abiola’s home In Lagos, on Thursday also made a list of other demands to the Nigerian Federal government.
While asking the government to execute popular projects that would have lasting impact on the lives of citizens it said: “As a movement, we shall be asking for June 12 as a concept and as a principle to be taught in Nigerian schools as a core civic theme,” said Anthony Killa, the chairman of the organising committee of the 25th anniversary of June 12, who spoke on behalf of the group.
“We shall be working to turn this Abiola house to a Centre of Democracy in Africa. We shall continue to insist that M.K.O Abiola, the president-elect and the symbol of the fairest, freest, and the most peaceful election in the history of Nigeria be declared the president of Nigeria. We shall request that he be declared and referred to as the president that never ruled,but elected.
“There are some people who say that can he be declared president because he wasn’t sworn-in? And I take them back to the rudiments of politics and social context in life and to explain to the world that the moment of being elected is bigger than the moment of being sworn-in.
“Because swearing-in is a ceremony that involves how many people? Decorators, journalists, friends, and family. The voice of the people is the ballot box. The voice of the people is in the choice they made.”
On the mixed reactions with which Nigerians have received the June 12 declaration, Killa said
“Some have wondered and expressed suspicion and concern over the idea that this President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration that is quarter to the end of his tenure and a few months to the election; some are wondering if they are just doing this for political gain, or more specifically, for electoral calculations,”
“We of the June 12 Movement say that the suspicion is legitimate, but we also hasten to add that we do not see a problem with that.
“Rather we welcome such development and we implore this administration and indeed all spheres of government from the local to the state back to the federal government to the ministers passing through the two chambers that make the National Assembly to identify popular concepts and to embrace them.”
Olawale Okuniyi, the convener of the June 12 Movement, in his remark, said the government should compensate Mr Abiola’s family as well as those who had paid the supreme price during the June 12 struggle.
“The federal government should go forward and officially declare Chief MKO Abiola the winner of the election in 1993. That must be immediately done, we want that done before the day June 12.”
Also speaking, the President of the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum, Shettima Yerima said, “The democracy we are all talking about is also built on rule of law. Does this government actually have respect for the rule of law?
“Whether we like it or not, this is politicking as far as I’m concerned, there is a trick to it. But however we are going to adopt this system of Oliver Twist, we’ll collect this one and hold and push for it until it is being gazetted because it looks suspicious, less than two weeks ago there was celebration of Democracy Day under this same government.”
In gratitude for the recognition of late M.K.O Abiola, the son, Abdul Abiola noted that the recognition was “.. not be seen as an Abiola victory but a victory for those who voted for him at that time, those who laid their lives down, and those who still carry on.”