HONOR ABIOLA WITH GCFR NOW- REPS TO FG - ROUND GIST

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Wednesday, 14 June 2017

HONOR ABIOLA WITH GCFR NOW- REPS TO FG

Reps to govt: give Abiola GCFR

THE House of Representatives has urged the Federal Government to posthumously confer the highest national honour – the Grand Commander of the Order of the Federal republic (GCFR)  – on the late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawale A biola.

According to them, this would be  a measure of recognition for his unprecedented achievements, contributions and sacrifice to the unity, peace, progress and development of Nigeria, Africa and the world.

The resolution of the House followed the adoption of a motion by Sani Zoro (APC, Jigawa).

Zoro said there were several reasons to justify Abiola’s immortalisation.

He said: “We remember him today as always, as a true and great son of Nigeria, who touched lives more than any other person in his life, who contributed to the achievement of religious harmony by building bridges between faith organisations like nobody else, the humane boss, who employed Nigerians from all walks of life and treated them with affection and care as if they were members of his family, the man who championed the good cause of Africans for the exploitation and the heinous crime of slavery meted to them.

“It is sad though that despite these uncommon qualities, capped by his victory at the presidential election of June 12, 1993, but which was denied him by retrogressive forces in conspiracy with agents of destabilisation – that Nigerian authorities had never at any given time conferred a national honour on him, in his eventful life time or posthumously, despite the fact that many Nigerians and non-Nigerians of dubious value had continued to be decorated with such national honours year in, year out.

“There are abundant justifications to immortalise Abiola, to do that going by the event of June 12.

“Abiola and Buhari shared so much in common, even in popularity. While Abiola got eight million out from a total of 14  million votes, President Buhari got 15 million out of 28 million. That’s half of the total votes by the two.

“Justice can still be done, even 24 years after. It’s never too late.”

Anayo Nnebe (PDP, Anambra) said the annulment was an injustice through executive recklessness.

“Whatever reasons Ibrahim Babangida gave for the annulment cannot erase the fact that Abiola won the election

“Abiola is entitled to that award because it will be discouraging if it is such that the system only recognises and remembers criminals,” he noted.

Saying that June 12 transcends a regional issue, Nnnebe noted that the day deserved to be declared a national public holiday to be celebrated by every Nigerian because the entire country voted for Abiola in the ill-fated election.

“It was not a Southwest issue; let every part of the country celebrate the day, justice should start by declaring June 12 a national holiday,” he added.

Olufunke Adedoyin (APC, Kwara), who wondered what had changed about the long-held notion that Abiola should be immortalised, asked why the House as in times past rejected motions calling for the late politician to be officially recognised by the Federal Government.

“Abiola’s immense contributions to the nation should be recognized; he was a philanthropist with an Africa agenda,” she added.

Wale Raji (APC, Lagos) said the greatest honour that can be bestowed on Abiola posthumously is to release the annulled result and declare him winner of the election.

The motion was unanimously adopted after it was put to a voice vote by Speaker Yakubu Dogara.

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