OSOGBO — Osun State Governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, Wednesday, challenged the Federal Government to make open details of events that led to the death of the presumed winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, Chief Moshood Kasimawo Olawale Abiola.
Speaking at a symposium organised by the state government in collaboration with civil society organisations in Osogbo to mark the 20th anniversary of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, said the Federal Government owes Nigerians details about the death of Abiola.
Aregbesola, speaking on: ‘June 12 and the National Question,’ said the crisis that emanated from the June 12 election annulment brought to the fore the fundamental cracks of Nigeria’s polity.”
He stressed that Nigerians deserve full knowledge of all that transpired in the corridors of power during the military era when Abiola lost his life.
Aregbesola said: “The annulment revealed in a most brazen manner the problem of unjust political domination and the need to restructure our political system and redefine the basis of our national existence.”
According to him: “This is a central concern of what is generally described as the national question. It is also the basis of the widespread call for convening a sovereign national conference to renegotiate the basis of our nationhood.”
He added: “The national question remains unaddressed and we are still grappling with the drawbacks. Yet the national ruling power establishment continues to live in denial of this reality, and pretending as though the problems are not there, or nursing the futile hope that the problems will simply disappear, of their accord.
“June 12 and Chief Abiola represent a great lesson for Nigeria in nation building. They are a metaphor for the plausibility of unity in the country; that if we work hard at it, we can find worthy causes with which the people can identify and around which they can truly unite.”
This is the great lesson Chief Abiola has taught us in nationhood,” the Governor stressed.
Also, former United State Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Walter Carrington said, “Mr Aregbesola needs to be thanked for remembering what too many States seem too willing to forget. It seems that only four others stand with Osun today in declaring this 20th anniversary of June 12 a public holiday.
Meantime, the former United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Walter Carrington yesterday expressed satisfaction that Osun is being placed in the vanguard of progressive states in the country with its innovations and declaration of June 12 as a public holiday.
Specifically, the former US envoy listed recent unveiling of Opon Imo (Tablet of Knowledge) as an innovative strategy to put Osun’s students on the forefront of digital age.
Carrington spoke in Osogbo, the Osun capital at the 20th anniversary of the June 12 presidential election which was won by Bashorun Moshood Abiola. His speech was read by a member of the Senate, Prof Sola Adeyeye.
This was just as Governor Rauf Aregbesola said the crisis that was precipitated by the annulment of June 12 election, brought to the fore the fundamental flaws in the Nigerian polity.