A national socio-political group, Women For Yari Movement (W4YM), has felicitated all Nigerians on the occasion of June 12 Democracy Day and appreciated His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu from dissociating himself from the now botched attempt to foist a leadership of stooges on the incoming 10th National Assembly.
Also, the W4YM has reiterated its conviction that Distinguished Senator Abdulaziz Yari would emerge the Senate President of the 10th National Assembly in a free and fair election, which His Excellency President Tinubu has now guaranteed.
The W4YM stated this via a statement it issued in Abuja on Monday, 12 June, 2023 to celebrate Democracy Day and thanked His Excellency President Tinubu for his promise not to interfere in the upcoming 10th National Assembly leadership election with a view to imposing leaders on the Assembly.
In the statement, the W4YM recalled the sacrifices which Chief MKO Abiola, Alhaja Kudirat Abiola, Pa Alfred Rewane, Gen. Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, Air Commodore Dan Suleiman, Prof. Wole Soyinka, Gen, Alani Akinrinade, Rear Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu, Chief Yinka Odumakin, Mr. Femi Falana, Chief Olisa Agbakoba, Ms. Ayo Obe, Sen. Chris Anyanwu, His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu Tinubu and First Lady (Dr.) Oluremi Tinubu, among others in the pro-democracy movement made for the June 12 Struggle and the restoration of democracy in Nigeria.
The statement was entitled, “June 12, 1993: 30 Years On, Women For Yari Movement Celebrates President Tinubu, MKO Abiola, Kudirat Abiola And Other Icons of Democracy”.
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On the neutrality of His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu in the 10th National Assembly Election, the Women For Yari Movement disclosed:
“The Women For Yari Movement has another veritable ground to thank and appreciate His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu. You will recall that on Sunday, 21 May, 2023 the Women For Yari Movement held a World Press Conference during which we appealed to His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to prevail on the National Working Committee (NWC) of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to withdraw that now totally discredited zoning list purporting to zone the Senate President and other leadership positions of the incoming 10th National Assembly to certain geo-political zones. The offensive list even micro-zoned these exalted offices to certain individuals, which is totally undemocratic.
“You recall that we stuck our necks out to insist that His Excellency President President Bola Ahmed Tinubu had nothing to do with that noxious list and that some courtiers who were only attempting to form themselves into a nascent cabal were behind the anti-democratic scheme to foist a leadership of their lapdogs and puppets on the 10th National Assembly.
“You will remember that the Women For Yari Movement stated unequivocally that the nebulous cabalists were only engaged in name-dropping, that His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu did not approve of the invasive list and that the cabalists were only out to weaponise the President’s name to soften and clear the field of strong candidates like Distinguished Senator Abdulaziz Yari, who is the preferred candidate for Senate President among the majority of the incoming Senators of the 10th National Assembly.”
The Women For Yari Movement continued: “We can inform you that His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has dissociated himself totally from that false flag operations of the cabalists and insisted that as a true democrat who made his name from the June 12 Struggle, he will not interfere in the leadership contest of the 10th National Assembly. Based on his inaugural speech, he said and we quote: “We will not dictate. We shall dialogue where the People’s Voice will take (centre) stage. We are here to build the country”.
“To clear any lingering doubt in any quarters nationwide, we in the Women For Yari Movement hereby informs the nation on good authority that His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has declared himself a neutral observer in the upcoming election of the Principal Officers of the 10th National Assembly, which shall take place on Proclamation Day, Tuesday, June 13, 2023 on the floors of the National Assembly, Abuja.
“Therefore, we in the W4YM seize on the significance of today – June 12, 2023 and Democracy Day – in the annals of Nigerian history to express our heartfelt appreciation to His Excellency President Bola Ahmed for his nobility in living up to his long-held democratic principles as regards the 10th National Assembly leadership election. As the first election in this regime, this is a litmus test for the Tinubu Presidency from now till 2027.
“The President has declared neutrality and a level-playing field in the 10th National Assembly election holding on Tuesday, June 13, 2023. His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is a noble man. His words are his bonds. He will stick to them. Let no cabalists tell you otherwise.
“It bears repeating that on Tuesday, June 13, 2023 the 10th National Assembly shall be inaugurated and the 109 Senators shall elect Distinguished Senator Abdulaziz Yari as President of the Senate in an open, free and fair election which the whole nation shall witness live on national and satellite television stations, radios and on online broadcast and streaming platforms.
“It is the classical, true democracy which His Excellency President Tinubu fought for through the June 12 Struggle and as Governor of Lagos State. His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu will strengthen that democracy by his avowed non-interference in the election of the10th National Assembly this Tuesday. The President has spoken! He is a Hero of Democracy. He would strengthen our democracy on the floor of the 10th National Assembly come Tuesday, June 13, 2023 by not favouring and imposing any candidates on the 10th National Assembly.
“The emergence of Distinguished Senator Abdulaziz Yari as Senate President in the envisaged transparent, free and fair election shall be another bright feather added to the democratic cap of His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu as the Father of the Nation and Icon of Democracy in Nigeria – a reputation His Excellency President Tinubu rightly and bravely earned in the crucibles of the June 12 Struggle. So shall it be in the name of the Almighty God, amen!”
Going down memory lane on June 12, the Women For Yari Movement, observed: “How time flies! Three decades ago on this very day, millions of Nigerians flocked out to polling units nationwide to elected Bashorun MKO Abiola of the defunct Social Democratic Party (SDP) as President, Federal Republic of Nigeria. It was the freest and fairest election held in Nigeria at that time. Unfortunately, the Military Junta annulled that free and fair poll, which led into a huge national crisis and struggle for the de-annulment of June 12. In that patriotic, democratic cause, many heroes were forged from the fire of the struggle, even as the villains and anti-democratic forces in Nigeria were revealed to the world.
“June 12, 1993 gave birth to the democracy we enjoy in Nigeria today and it is imperative we celebrate the heroes of the June 12 Struggle on this day. We remember Chief MKO Abiola, the eternal symbol of June 12 who, like a true Aare Ona Kakanfo – the Generalissimo of ancient Yoruba Army – faced up to the Military and demanded the mandate we Nigerians gave him on June 12, 1993.
“For his courageous stand for democracy, for the peace and prosperity of Nigeria and the Nigerian People, Chief MKO Abiola paid the ultimate price, dying in military detention. May Allah grant repose to his beautiful soul and grant him Aljanah Firdaus, Amin! Chief MKO Abiola, the Women For Yari Movement remember your ultimate sacrifice for democracy! We celebrate you today and forevermore! May Allah continue to grant your family the heart to bear this irreplaceable loss as your legacy of democracy lives on.
“Nigerians would recall that women trooped out en mass and were the majority of voters on June 12, 1993. And when the Military annulled the election, Nigerians would also recall that the women of this blessed country took to the barricades to demand for the restoration of the People’s Mandate freely bestowed on Chief MKO Abiola on June 12, 1993.
“Many were the women who took the military’s bullets in their bosoms for June 12. Today we remembers these Amazons – dead and alive – who fought for the democracy we all enjoy today:
“Chief (Mrs.) Kudirat Abiola, it is June 12! We remember you today! You laid down your life for our democracy! We shall never forget! May Allah be pleased with you and admit you into Paradise, amen!
“Chief (Mrs.) Suliat Adedeji. Today is June 12! We remember you! Great matriarch of democracy, you lost your life to the struggle in a most gruesome manner. We recall your memory with pride for the life of service to democracy and humanity you lived. We shall never forget! May Allah grant you eternal bliss in Aljanah, amin!
“Many were the men and amazons at the June 12 Barricades. Pa Alfred Rewane, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, Pa. Abraham Adesanya, Chief Adekunle Ajasin, Dr. Beekololari Ransome-Kuti, Gen. Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, Air Commodore Dan Suleiman, Rear Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu, Chief Yinka Odumakin, and so on and so forth. Sweet is the remembrance of the righteous! In blessed memory, we remember you all and celebrate you all today!
“The icons of the June 12 Struggle still with us – men and women – we remember you all. Prof. Wole Soyinka, Gen. Alani Akinrinade, Chiefs Frank Kokori, Chief Olisa Agbakoba, Mr. Femi Falana, Ms. Ayo Obe, Senator Chris Anyanwu, Dr. Joe Odumakin and others too numerous to mention, you are celebrated and appreciated for your sacrifices to the Nigerian democracy.
“And of course there is the Father of the Nation, His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR. Who dares deny your immense contributions to the June 12 struggle and eventual restoration of democracy to our dear Motherland, Nigeria! Indeed we in the W4YM are grateful to you for the democracy Nigeria enjoys today.
“A thousand tongues cannot tell the Tinubu tale when it comes to chronicling the history of June 12 and return to democracy in this country. Few suffered from the taking the principled stand on June 12 more than His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and his family members.
“Many were the personal privations suffer by His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and our First Family in the cause of fighting for June 12. From a total, complete loss of all His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu had worked for in the course of a sterling professional career with multinationals like Mobil Oil, etc to prolonged incarcerations, multiple assassination attempts on his life and those of his loved ones, including sustained danger and harassments of our amiable First Lady, Sen. (Dr.) Oluremi Tinubu, the President and his family members suffered! Their travails culminated in forced exile for His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, First Lady, Sen. (Dr.) Oluremi Tinubu and their then young children, via the famous “NADECO Route”.
“Therefore, it is very fitting that the Women For Yari Movement pays ample tributes to His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the First Lady, Sen. (Dr.) Oluremi Tinubu on this auspicious occasion of June 12 Democracy Day. Mr. President, you are celebrated; you are highly appreciated – for all you have done and sacrificed to return democracy to Nigeria.
“May God continue to be with His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the First Lady, Sen. (Dr.) Oluremi Tinubu and the First Family as they lead our dear country Nigeria to higher heights.”