By Anthony Ogbonna
Human Rights activist, Femi Falana, (SAN) has urged the Federal Government to recognise other heroes of June 12 struggle from other parts of the country, maintaining that the struggle was not a NADECO and Afenifere affair alone.
He said the federal government has conferred national honours and recognition on chief MKO Abiola as well as chief Gani Fawehinmi for the June 12 struggle but failed to recognise other heroes from other parts of the country.
Mr. Falana gave the statement while being guest on Channels Televisions Democracy Day edition of Sunrise Daily, on Wednesday.
According to him, civil society organisations, the progressive trade unions and other patriotic groups had joined to fight a dictatorial government that usurped the democracy then, hence, they should be recognised too.
According to him, “My advice to the government, beyond recognising chief MKO Abiola, beyond the national honour, well deserved, conferred on him, as well as chief Gani Fawehinmi, we must also identify other heroes of that struggle from all over the country. This was not a NADECO and Afenifere affair.
“The beauty of those who are coming from the civil society who have found themselves either in the executive or the legislature is to ensure that those ideals are actualised and implemented in Government, that is why June 12 is so significant.”
Falana said that after the said elections in June 12, candidate of the National Republican Convention (NRC), Bashir Tofa, was under pressure to go to the tribunal but he refused and instead, congratulated Abiola for his victory, prompting patriotic Nigerians to rise up against dictatorship.
“The point has been made abundantly clear, after that election, Bashir Tofa, the other candidate congratulated his opponent and that is what is done in any civilised society; he was under pressure to go to the tribunal but he said no.
“From that moment, the civil society came in, the progressive trade unions came in and made the country ungovernable for the dictators.
“They were waging the struggle when some of us were captured and taken to jail houses, they made it ungovernable for the military dictators to have their way, at the end we won the battle for the restoration.”