Gbajabiamila celebrates Nigeria’s 22 years of uninterrupted democracy
Reps Minority Leader Urges Fairness, Justice In Polity
The Speaker, House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila has congratulated Nigerians for marking 22 years of uninterrupted democracy.
The speaker said since the return of democratic governance in 1999, Nigeria has witnessed progress and development in terms of physical infrastructure and freedom of choice and expression, which are part of the key pillars of democracy.
Gbajabiamila expressed delight that citizens have been giving their democratic leaders support for the past two decades, calling for more support and cooperation.
The speaker, who said every democracy has its peculiarities, Nigeria’s inclusive, noted that despite the challenges faced, there is no question about the appropriateness of democracy in every society in today’s world.
He noted that dialogue remains key in resolving all democratic bottlenecks, calling for more of such in the nation’s body polity and among the citizens.
He specifically commended the APC-led government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari for redefining democracy by bringing its dividends closer to the citizens through people-oriented programmes and policies.
Similarly, the Deputy Minority Leader, House of Representatives, Mr. Toby Okechukwu, has stressed the need for a just and fair treatment of the citizenry.
Okechukwu, in a statement to mark the democracy day celebration, argued that such measure is required to arrest worsening insecurity and separatist agitations across the country.
He said the nation was clearly in a state of anomie and dysfunction, although there were still opportunities to preserve the nation’s democracy and reconstruct the union to a more workable piece.
He reminded the nation that June 12 was designated Democracy Day in honour of a symbol of the nation’s democratic struggles, the late Chief MKO Abiola, who was unjustly denied the opportunity to exercise an overwhelmingly popular mandate handed him by the Nigerian people on June 12 1993, but only to be celebrated at death.
“The greatest debt the governments and leaders of Nigeria owe every part of this country and every Nigerian is a sense of justice and equity according to the letters and spirit of our constitution while alive, not posthumously as in the case of Chief MKO Abiola.
“The old fashionable and lazy approach of scapegoating and threatening individuals and ethnic groups as a basis for settling Nigerian problems cannot suffice at this time. It only mutates monstrously and further acerbates our problems”, he stated.
The lawmaker, who represents the Aninri/Awgu/Oji River Federal Constituency in Enugu State, charged elders and elected leaders to acknowledge that they were elected to solve problems and not to compound them by their attitudes, policies and utterances.
Okechukwu commended the leaders of the South East and the Federal Government for the Friday, June 11, dialogue in Enugu to deescalate tension in the region, noting that it is a right step that should be sustained and replicated nationwide.
He wished Nigerians a happy Democracy Day, reiterating, however that “we should be good students of history to ensure that the M.KO Abiola scenario, the June 12 situation should never happen again.”
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