The Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Chief Gani Adams on Wednesday urged Nigerians to imbibe the lessons of June 12 struggle by not giving up on the nation’s democracy.
Adams made the call at the commemoration of June 12 Democracy Day in honour of the late Chief MKO Abiola, organised by the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) in Lagos.
The theme of the event was: “The mantra of June 12 and democratic consolidation in Nigeria.”
Adwms said the actualisation of June 12 as Democracy Day showed there was hope for a better Nigeria, adding that “Chief MKO Abiola died for democracy to be sustained in Nigeria and the June 12 struggle has been on for 27 years, but we thank God that our struggle ended in victory.
“One of the lessons of June 12 is that you do not give up on a course or a struggle and I urge Nigerians not give up on our democracy. With continued struggle, our needs and yearnings as a people will be met someday, just as June 12 has been eventually declared as Democracy Day in Nigeria.
“Nigerians must continue to demand for good governance and social justice. In fact, that I’m an Aare Onakakanfo will not stop me from fighting for the rights of Nigerians. This is because I’m an Aare with a conscience, “he said.
He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for recognising June 12 as Nigeria’s rightful Democracy Day and urged him to take a step further in honouring the memory of MKO Abiola by recognising that restructuring was the way out of the country’s current challenges.
According to him, if Nigeria is restructured, terrorism, banditry, kidnapping, herdsmen crisis and insecurity will become history.
Also speaking, President, Centre for Change Initiative, Dr Joe Okei-Odumakin, urged the federal government to make a posthumous declaration of MKO Abiola as a past President of Nigeria.
Okei-Odumakin said that entrenching the ideals of June 12 was the only way to properly immortalise Abiola.
“When we have not restructured and decentralised power in Nigeria, when we have not conducted free and fair elections, when there is insecurity of lives and property, when Nigerians are yet to be taken out of poverty, we cannot say we have immortalised Abiola.
“June 12 will never be forgotten in the anals of our democratic struggle, “she said.