By Ogbolu George
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has rejected May 29 as Nigeria’s Democracy Day, describing it as “fraudulent, unrealistic and escapist.”
The group, in a statement issued on Sunday by its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola, and made available to Concise News, said May 29 was picked by the last military regime of General Abdulsalaam Abubakar because it marked the day the military handed over power to civilians after decades of military dictatorship.
Muric said June 12 should be Nigeria’s real Democracy Day because the June 12 election was adjudged by both local and international observers as the most orderly, most peaceful and most democratic election in the annals of Nigeria’s history.
”That election remains celebrated today as the only one that was free of rigging, ballot box snatching, thuggery, hooliganism and other related ugly incidents.
”June 12, 1993, was the day all Nigerians decided to sink religious and ethnic differences. They voted for the Muslim-Muslim ticket of Chief M. K. O. Abiola and Babagana Kingibe. Nigerians spoke with one voice on that memorable day from Enugu to Kaora Namoda and from Sokoto to Bayelsa. The churches rejoiced with the mosques on June 12, 1993, and Nigeria truly became one.
”One of the reasons for our failure to resolve the problems facing Nigeria is the inability of our leadership to face reality, to admit mistakes and to make amends. May 29 was a grievous mistake. June 12 is the way forward.
”If we do not know where we are going, at least we know where we are coming from. June 12 is where we are coming from. Let us go back to it in order to jog our people’s memory, ignite their passion and rekindle their patriotism,” the group said.
Muric also called on the federal government and the All Progressives Congress (APC) to keep faith with the change mantra by going back to June 12.