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Abiola’s GCFR Award: A box of honour but contains note of electoral expectation from South West – Shehu Sani

“…Invitees for inauguration are betrayers of June 12”

A senator representing Kaduna-central, Shehu Sani has described MKO Abiola’s GCFR honour by President Muhammadu Buhari as a ‘Golden box of honour’ but swiftly added that it contains ‘a note of electoral expectation from the Southwest.’

Senator Sani also slammed the Presidency over some of the listed names of persons invited to late MKO Abiola’s GCFR inauguration.

Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Boss Mustapha had on Friday announced names of invited guests which had some members of the National Executive Committee of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), State chairmen and secretaries in the runoff to the historic June 12 presidential election. Also on the list are governors elected under the platform of PDP in 1993.

In his reaction, Senator Sani noted that most of the invitees betrayed MKO Abiola during June 12 struggle.

He criticised the timing of the award, insisting that it gives room for concerns and suspicion of a political undertone.

“The recognition accorded to Chief MKO Abiola and the June 12 struggle by the PMB administration is commendable. It’s long overdue. PMB has done what many of his predecessors failed to do,” Sani said.

“However, the timing of the recognition in an election year raised issues that the recognition was not without motive. It is a Golden box of honour containing a note of electoral expectation from the Southwest.

“Honoring June 12 is appreciated but exploiting Abiola’s name for 2019 election will splash oil on the pearl.

“Some of those invited and honoured by the villa in the name Abiola or June 12 were people who betrayed Abiola and abandoned the struggle even when chief MKO was alive, others even disowned, condemned and denied him in his hours of need. There are Judases of June 12 now honoured in the name of Abiola.

“The greatest honour the government can do to the spirit of June 12 is to habitually respect the rights of Nigerians to differ and to dissent without persecution, obey court orders and prosecute the war against corruption without discrimination.

“Honoring democracy heroes will make no meaning if we don’t live up to the principles and noble ideals they were identified with and upon which they lived and sacrificed their lives for.

“Honoring Chief MKO Abiola and the June 12 struggle shouldn’t be the only reason the south-west or any other part of Nigeria should re-elect the Present Government; the government must strive hard to end the mindless bloodshed and violence in the country and must respect the rule of law and rid itself of budding autocratic tendencies.

“There is the need for the National Democratic Coalition, NADECO, to reconvene immediately to guide the President and the Parliament on how best to honour the June 12 struggle, to avoid the coronation of traitors along with heroes.”

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