By Kolawole Olayinka, Abeokuta
Entire Yoruba race has been charged to commend President Muhammadu Buhari for declaring June, 12 as Official Democracy Day after 26th years of June and 20 years of the country’s transition from Military rule to Civil rule.
This recommendation was made by Dr Goke Raufu who was Guest Lecturer at the Special June 12 Lecture organized by the Ladi Adebutu Development Organisation (LADO) held at Park Inn, Hotel, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Dr. Raufu, a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Mass Communication, Moshood Abiola Polytechnic (MAPOLY), Abeokuta, Ogun State, charged Yoruba race to formidable unity in order to engender a valuable contribution to the NigerianNation.
He explained that President Muhammadu Buhari needed to be praised by Nigerians, particularly the Yoruba and Afenifere group, because people in the helms of affairs then did not want June 12, to come to live, because of lack of unity within the Yoruba race. But today the man from Daura in Kastina state did it for us after many years of expectations.
Raufu said the civil war made the issue of national unity worse, however the military attempted to forge national integration as exemplified by Obasanjos merger of the regional televions and radio stations under NTA and FRCN in 1978. The establishment of NYSC in 1973 was another attempt among others.
The Guest Lecturer opined that no matter how good a military government it is incomparable to Democracy which offers the people the opportunity to govern themselves.
The politics of the Second Republic and thereafter have not been particularly disposed to national unity despite the pretence exhibited by the political class who only think of Political Party with national spread because of the need to get large chunk of votes across the geopolitical zones and states to be able to form national government.
The UPN, GNPP, PRP were champions in their regions/states and ethnic based while the NPN followed the same pattern of NPC and NCNC merger of the first Republic.
He noted that since 1999, AD, APGA, even ANPP as well as A C N were regional and ethnic based while P DP was initially restricted to the East and majority of Nothern state until the South West joind the PDP group, courtesy of ‘the will to belong to the national platform starting with Obasanjo’s presidency. “Do you see any ethnic colouration”, he asked.
Hon Ladi Adebutu at the occasion declared it was important for Nigerians to recognise and celebrate June 12, adding that it was apposite to laud the President of Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari for officially declaring June 12 as Democracy Day in Nigeria and naming Abuja International Stadium after Bashorun Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola tagged (MKO)
Adebutu explained that he was the youngest Honourable member of House of Representatives in 1992 before former general Ibrahim Gbadamosi Babangida annulled the June 12, 1993 general elections.
Chief Adebutu who was the a governorship aspirants under the umbrella of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) While thanking the guests for the gracing the event, expressed joy seeing some of his former colleagues at the National Assembly.
Speaking at the special lecture, Dr. Doyin Okupe, former Aide to former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan said June 12 meant a lot to Nigeria, particularly the Yoruba, as the election was free and fair.
He also stressed that the elections was the voice of the people and voice of common Nigerians.
Okupe believed June 12 Democracy Day being celebrated today gave ways to many of Nigerians and nobody ever remembered the family of Abiola.
He added that Abiola played an indellible role by giving us democracy when some enemies of progress truncated the second republic by the military government.
The event which well attended had among others: Hon. Sikirulahi Ogundele, PDP State chairman; chief Laide Odusanya; Kayode Akintunde, Chief Olu Bankole, chief Boye Olushola, Ayo Oyekunle, chief Alani Akinde, Sunday Solomon, Rt. Hon. Yemi Coker, former Speaker of Ogun State House of Assembly, Chief Adesina Adigun and Boye Adesina.