A daughter of late Chief MKO Abiola, Lola Abiola-Edewor, on Wednesday urged President Muhammadu Buhari to do his best to address security challenges in the country.
Abiola-Edewor, a former member of the House of Representatives, made the appeal during a ceremony to lay wreath at the tomb of her late father, at his house in Ikeja.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the ceremony was part of the programme organised by a pro-democracy group, June 12 Movement, to commemorate the anniversary of the June 12, 1993 election.
Late MKO Abiola was the presumed winner of the June 12, 1993 election, which was annulled by the Gen. Ibrahim Babangida military regime.
Abiola-Edewor said the problem of insecurity in the country was becoming a big issue which needed to be frontally tackled.
She expressed the family’s gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for the post-humous award given to her father, and for declaring June 12 as Democracy Day.
The late politician’s daughter said Buhari had demonstrated uncommon courage for taking the steps.
She said that if Buhari could do what previous governments thought could not be done; he could also address insecurity with the right determination.
Abiola-Edewor therefore urged the president to take urgent and result-oriented steps to find lasting solutions to the problem of insecurity.
She said: “We thank the president for the honour bestowed on our late father and the declaration of June 12 as Democracy Day.
“We are very grateful for this honour done the family and the Nigerian people.
“However, I want to appeal to the president to address the security challenges in the country, as the issue is getting serious.
“If the president could declare June 12 as Democracy Day, despite denials of the past, I believe he can tackle the problem of insecurity in the country.”
Abiola-Edewor also thanked Nigerians of all backgrounds for standing with the family over the years.
She described her late father as a lover of the people and a firm believer in democracy.
NAN reports laying of wreath which was witnessed by the state deputy governor, Dr Obafemi Hamzat; renowned political economist, Prof. Pat Utomi; Senator Shehu Sani, among other dignitaries, was followed by a lecture on June 12.
Speaking at the lecture, a former Vice-President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Issa Aremu, also commended the president for recognising June 12 and declaring it a public holiday.
The labour activist thanked the National Assembly for passing the bill recognising June 12 as Democracy Day.
Aremu said the June 12 Act was one of the best laws enacted by the present government, just like the Minimum Wage Act, in terms of impact and reflection of the peoples wish.
The labour leader said the enactment of the law was a triumph for democracy.
He said: “The June 12 Act, just like the Minimum Wage Act, is one of the best laws made by the present government.
“I commend President Buhari and the National Assembly on the law; it is a triumph not only for democracy but also for the Nigerian people.”
He described June 12 as a watershed in the country’s history, as it was the day Nigerians shunned all sentiments to vote for a man of their choice.
Also speaking, Mohammed Fawehinmi, son of the late human rights lawyer, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, said the lessons of June 12 should guide the country’s democracy.
He said the country’s democracy was still far from where it should be.
Leader of the June 12 Movement, Wale Okunniyi, said the programme was organised annually to commemorate the day democracy was truly demonstrated by Nigerians.
He said that the group had been vanguard of struggles to actualise June 12 and was glad that the historic day had been declared Democracy Day.
NAN reports prayers were offered for the peaceful repose of Abiola’s soul at the programme.