Sanwo-Olu, CSOs, others extol MKO Abiola's sacrifice for democracy


Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat (Middle) laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Abiola (MKO) with him are the State Executive Council Members and Family & Friends of the Late MKO after the 30th and 13th National Discourse Organized by Coalition for a Better Nigeria held at the MKO Abiola House, Ikeja Lagos, on Wednesday.

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has called on Nigerians to cherish and live by the tenets of democracy for the prosperity and progress of the nation.

The Governor gave this charge on Wednesday while speaking at an event to mark the 30th anniversary of the Epetedo Self Declaration & 13th National Discourse, organized by the Coalition for a Better Nigeria, themed “Converting the Pain of June 12 Election Annulment to Gain of Present Administration,” held at MKO Abiola House, Ikeja.

Sanwo-Olu, who was represented at the event by the Deputy Governor. Dr. Kadri Hamzat emphasized that “as a nation, we must cherish our democracy and be democrats in all we do. Besides, Democracy is not about force but conviction of ideas. So, it is not that my views must always win. It means we must debate it, we must talk about it and must come together to agree about it.”

He also stated that public commentators must speak with the fear of God, be patriotic, love the country and adhere to the tenets of democracy which are essential qualities for good governance.

“It is important for the citizens to be patriotic and protect the integrity of the country in order not to destroy the legacy of our forefathers who paid the ultimate price in gaining democracy, particularly the late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Abiola (MKO). It is important to respect our past heroes especially those that are still living,” said Sanwo-Olu.

He noted that Nigeria’s democracy has gained its roots and given room for freedom of speech among other fundamental human rights which has helped to create a conducive environment for economic growth, stability, and sustainable development.

While commenting on the implication of the June 12 event in Nigeria, the Governor stated that it has helped the citizenry to recognize that democracy should be cherished, adding that “those actors that stopped the process are not proud enough to explain what they did.”

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However, he stressed the need to study history at school to enable the younger generations to appreciate heroes who fought for the country, both the living and dead.

Earlier in his lecture titled “Impact of June 12 on the Democratic and Economic Development of Nigeria”, Comrade Debo Adeniran reiterated that the late Chief Abiola was a pillar of strength and hope for Nigerians and Africans, who paid the sacrifice for Nigerian’s freedom.

Adeniran described the late Abiola as a good man who served humanity, practiced a welfare agenda, and was an indiscriminate philanthropist all over the world; this was what made Nigerians gave him their vote to become the president, “as they believed he would change the economic situation of the country to prosperity”.

In her welcome address, the First Daughter of late Bashorun Moshood Abiola, Mrs. Lola Abiola-Edewor thanked the immediate past President Muhammadu Buhari for recognizing the June 12 and making it a democratic day and President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for his constant support to the family.

Abiola-Edewor stressed the need for Nigerians to be patient with the present administration as the president means well for the citizens which can be seen in his policies and mantra, “the Renewed Hope”. She therefore urged Nigerians to continue to support and pray for the leadership of the country to succeed, as “Rome was not built in a day”.

“I can assure us all that those promises will come to pass because Asiwaju is a grassroots man and cares for everyone, particularly the masses,” said Edewor, who commended the Lagos State government for its commitment to the date.

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