Prof. Wole Soyinka while speaking at the wreath-laying ceremony to commemorate the 21st anniversary of the death of Chief MKO Abiola, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to lead by example by obeying the law.
“President Muhammadu Buhari should lead by example by obeying the dictates of the law, so that other Nigerians can follow suit. It is this refusal to obey the law that has made some sectors of the populace to think they are above the law and are causing anarchy in the country,” Soyinka said.
According to the Nobel Laureate, there cannot be closure on the death of MKO until some of the challenges and anomalies in the nation were addressed and eliminated.
Soyinka further noted that President Buhari’s refusal to obey the law has made a section of the country think that they are above the law.
Read Prof. Soyinka’s statement below;
“This is the first gathering in honour of MKO Abiola after the formal recognition by the Federal Government that he was duly elected, and that he is a past president of this nation.
“And all we are waiting for is the formal actualisation through symbolic presence of his photographs among other presidents, even though he was never sworn into office.
“We cannot escape the past, but we can confront the challenges of the present, which of course very often arise from the past.
“We are inching slowly towards closure. One of these days when we gather, we shall be rejoicing.
“At that time, we would have progressed towards the elimination of some of the abnormalities and contradictions in our country.
“We have the issue of security, obeying the law, which is one thing that equalises all. President Muhammadu Buhari should lead by example by obeying the dictates of the law, so that other Nigerians can follow suit.
“It is this refusal to obey the law that has made some sectors of the populace to think they are above the law and are causing anarchy in the country.
“We have a responsibility as a people, and the government should address the issue of education, youth unemployment and insecurity.
“Just when we thought we were dealing with Boko Haram, then came these nomadic herdsmen armed with AK-47, and gradually, the kind of harmonious relationships that existed between various productive arms of this nation begins to disappear.
“We find ourselves on a daily basis being threatened, killed, our women being raped and other productive arms like farmers being driven off their own territories.
“These are critical issues that we need to deal with head-on and urgently, so that we begin to celebrate the memories of late Abiola and what he stood for,” Soyinka said.
“MKO Abiola is one of those that belong in that galaxy of stellar leaders who at the critical moments said, ‘No’. Nelson Mandela was one of them, Leah Sharibu is another young example.
“MKO Abiola, when he was given a conditional release in detention, said, ‘No’. This is an essential lesson,” he said.
Chief MKO Abiola was the winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election. He was charged with treason in 1994 by the regime of late General Sani Abacha for declaring himself the lawful elected President of Nigeria.
Abiola who died in 1998 was recently honoured with the highest award in the land by President Buhari.
David Chima is the Group Head (Editors) at Naija Buzz News. He is a very experienced Journalist. He studied Mass Communication at the Nuhu Bamalli Polytechnic Zaria, Kaduna State, before proceeding for Advanced Studies in Mass Communication (Journalism) at the Federal Polytechnic Bauchi, Bauchi State. He previously served as the Head Senior Reporters and Publishers at 1Push.Ng and eventually Naija Buzz News. Chima is a lover of football and a very strong supporter of Barcelona Football Club Spain.