BY ABDULWAH AB ABDULAH
Lagos—Former Secretary General of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, Chief Frank Kokori, yesterday said he doubted if Nigerians would ever stage a revolution capable of engendering positive change in the country. He also regretted that pro-democrats did not come to power following the June 12 struggle.
The former labour leader who said he was traumatised by the death of Chief M.K.O. Abiola, the presumed winner of the aborted June 12, 1993, presidential election, noted it was sad for him and other progressive in the country that despite numerous economic and political challenges that have characterised the nation’s polity, capable of engineer protests, many Nigerians always chosen the non-participant observation option.
Kokori made the pronouncement at the briefing he held in Lagos to announce the launch of his book “Frank Kokori: The struggle for June 12” to commemorate his 70th birthday.
He said this was more glaring when the struggle for June 12 mandate was on, as Nigerians expected to stand firm for the defence of democracy “chicken out at the middle of the deep sea.”
He said, “In 1998, when I was hosted to a reception in United States, some groups called me aside and told me that since Nigerians failed to support the nationwide strike action launched by NUPENG and PENGASSAN over the annulment of June 12, it will be difficult for Nigerians to revolt against tyranny in future and I agreed with them.
“Abiola was never my friend, I choose to go that way in the defence of democracy and my personal principle of equity and fairness. During that time, at a stage I was abandoned by the labour but NUPENG and PENGASAN stood by me.” Kokori said.