Thursday, 12 June 2008

Nigeria: June the Twelfth

Present in spirit

15 years ago on this day, I was not in Nigeria to participate in a democratic movement that we all hoped would change Nigeria.

A man so rich, so successful, so garrulous that he was bold enough to say no paranormal activity that creates destitution can survive in the midst of his wealth was about to take the spoils.

My heart and mind was at one with fellow Nigerians in the hope that the changes would occur that would make life better for them at home and things easier for those in Diaspora who were busy working overtime to repair the generalised bad reputation of Nigeria and Nigerians seen abroad.

I felt the pain, the agony greater than disappointment and despair when half the results were released and then the whole election was annulled.

Not fair, not just

Those elections were supposed to be fairest and freest elections ever conducted in Nigeria and for that reason until another election is conducted in Nigeria that rivals the standard of those conducted in 1993, June the Twelfth would remain significant in the minds of any fair-minded Nigerian.

Until we have a situation where a fairly and justly conducted democratic process clearly indicates the real choices of the electorate as expressed at the ballot box, June the Twelfth would be the benchmark.

Until the truth about why June the Twelfth is atoned for by more than an apology by General Ibrahim Babangida, but by exposing all the stakeholders and malevolent instigators whose ulterior motives are yet not scrutinised in the grand disenfranchisement of the most populous country in Africa – June the Twelfth remains a festering wound the Nigerian democratic psyche.

Not so soon already

So, General Abdulsalami Abubakar cannot now advise us to forget June the Twelfth because there is so much unfinished work to be done and realised.

We as Nigerians have been short-changed too much by rotten leaders who would prefer their legacies be fictional fairy tales of things being so wonderful – well, whoever has held power must be accountable for their tenure.

They should also be ready to answer questions about their conduct in government, however, this must not affect the everyday business of government, but a properly constituted quasi-judicial body must attend to the matters of the past so that we are not haunted by those mistakes in the future.

How to learn from the past

Lessons need to be learnt about our past especially that of the Twelfth of June, we can only lessons from analysis in detail so as not to commit those mistakes in the future.

The time for pulling the carpet of these matters has passed, the time for revering leaders who have not been audited for their stewardship in the light of the state of the lives of a majority of Nigerians has passed.

The time for the truth about June the Twelfth is now and it is important for building a viable future for our country – if there be any date or datum for the celebration of democracy in Nigeria, it should be June the Twelfth and no other day.

Reflections of others on June the Twelfth

Chxta’s World

NaijaEcash

Thy Glory O Nigeria

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