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Nigeria yet to learn from June 12, says Diri

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Bayelsa State Governor Douye Diri has called for the elimination of the factors that led to the annulment of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, if Nigeria must be taken seriously among democratic nations.

He said the celebration of June 12 would remain a ruse or mere jamboree if the issues that led to it were not addressed. Diri made the call at a Special Thanksgiving Service commemorating June 12 at the King of Glory Chapel, Government House in Yenagoa.

Represented by his deputy, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, the governor said almost 27 years after the rape on a smooth democratic process, the country was still wallowing in injustice, abuse of human rights, election thuggery, nepotism and total disregard for the rule of law.

The Acting Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Alabrah, quoted the governor as saying that the historic day of June 12 was yet to translate into good governance and unity of the country.

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To this end, Diri re-emphasised his administration’s drive to run an inclusive government and called on his political rivals to accept the olive branch he extended to them.

He said, as Bayelsans, they should join his prosperity administration to move the state forward, rather than assist the enemies to work against its development.

His words: “The things that led us to June 12 are still very much around. The injustices, discrimination, segregation, nepotism, bribery and corruption, oppression and repression and where some people take undue advantage of others are still going on in this country and we are celebrating June 12. It is my opinion and that of the Bayelsa government that we must make deliberate efforts to reduce or, if possible, completely eliminate the factors that led to June 12.

“On our part as a government, we have taken steps to ensure that we eliminate those things. That is why concerted efforts are being made to give those who offended us, people who have done us things that are unprintable the olive branch from the very day of its inauguration.”

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“We want to use the opportunity of this June 12 celebration to enjoin all Bayelsans, wherever they are, to think of how they will make Bayelsa great. This is the time for all Bayelsans, politicians and non-politicians, religious and non-religious and everybody to come and join hands with the Prosperity Administration.”

The governor said his administration would fulfil its infrastructure promises to Bayelsans, as well as pursue its agricultural programmes to bring the dividends of democracy to people of the state.

Earlier in his sermon, Rev Godspower Asingba enjoined the governor and his team to depend on God in everything they do.

According to Asingba, relying on one’s wisdom and the opinion of men without hearing from God while making decisions would lead to failure. President Muhammadu Buhari had elevated June 12 to Democracy Day in Nigeria, displacing May 29 when new governments take the saddle.

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