Obasanjo’s Failure To Honour MKO Abiola Was ‘A Lapse’, Says Former Aide
A former Political Adviser to former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Akin Osuntokun, has said that the failure of the previous administration to honour the presumed winner of the 1993 Presidential election, MKO Abiola, was a lapse.
Osuntokun stated this on Monday while appearing as a guest on Sunrise Daily, a breakfast show which aired on Channels Television.
“Personally, I think that it was a lapse on the former president’s part that they didn’t honour Abiola,” he said.
Osuntokun, who also served as the Director General of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) during Obasanjo’s administration, believes that the June 12 should not be trivialized by the actions or inactions of some individuals.
The former Presidential aide also faulted the remark made by President Buhari during an interview in 1999 on the late Abiola.
He added, “Anybody who wanted to rehabilitate June 12, you do not then reduce it. You are trivializing it by one person’s deeds.
“Look, we are seeing all these. This same President Buhari in 1998 granted an interview where he was asked about Abiola’s plight. He said do you expect me to have any sympathy for somebody who financed the coup that took me out of office.”
Osuntokun’s comments come less than a week after President Buhari announced June 12 as the new date which Democracy Day will be celebrated in Nigeria.
Buhari in a tweet on his official handle explained that June 12 will replace May 29 because it is a more symbolic day.
“We have also decided to award posthumously the highest Honour in the land, GCFR, to Chief MKO Abiola,” he said.
Reacting, Osuntokun lauded the Federal Government for announcing June 12 as the new democracy day in honour of Abiola.