By Omeiza Ajayi
The ruling All Progressives Congress APC has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for declaring June 12 Democracy Day but asked him to go a step further to honour the late spouse of the acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 Presidential Election, Kudirat Abiola.
“While joining Nigerians from all walks of life in commending President Muhammadu Buhari for declaring June 12 as Democracy Day as well as granting posthumous award of Nigeria’s highest national honour (Grand Commander of the Federal Republic) to Moshood Abiola, winner of the annulled presidential election of June 12, 1993, the All Progressives Congress APC) calls on the President to consider granting similar honour on Alhaja Kudirat Abiola”, the party urged.
In the statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, the party said it “believes that Alhaja Kudirat Abiola who paid the supreme price with her assassination in Lagos on June 4, 1996 at the heat of the mobilisation for the restoration of her husband’s mandate as the winner of the 1993 presidential election, deserves to be honoured in her own right as a heroin and martyr of democracy in Nigeria.
“APC recalls how she mobilised market women, students, activists and other human rights groups against military rule and the struggle for a truly democratic nation.
“The Party equally commend the decision to honour Abiola’s running mate, Babagana Kingibe, and late human rights activist, Gani Fawehinmi SAN with the second highest national honour, Grand Commander of the Niger (GCON). “In taking this courageous and patriotic decision, the President has again displayed a sincerity of purpose and his well-known penchant for doing the right thing irrespective of political and sundry considerations.
As a Party, we remain resolved in our struggle to deepen our democracy and continue to improve on the transparency and credibility of our electoral systems. We reiterate that regardless of its imperfections, democracy remains the best form of government that can best serve the interest of our people.
“We affirm that this decision by President Buhari yet again exemplifies APC’s commit-ment to the sanctity of popular elections and respect for the right of the people to freely choose their leaders in accordance to that fundamental principle of democracy that no man has the right to exercise power over other men, except with their consent”, the party added.