Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
The Deputy Director General of the Kayode Fayemi Campaign Organisation in Ekiti State, Hon. Bamidele Faparusi, has declared that the honour conferred on the late Chief Moshood Kashimaawo Abiola, as the winner of the June 12 election would help in bringing the family out of trauma.
Faparusi, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) , appealed to the southwest people to reciprocate the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC governmentâ€™s gesture with massive votes, at both the July 14 governorship election in Ekiti State and next yearâ€™s presidential election.
He said the honour bestowed on this great Nigerian as Icon of democracy by President Buhari , leading to declaration of June 12 as Democracy Day, would relieve the family of the late politician of the burden of oppression and repression caused by the then military government.
In a statement in Ado Ekiti yesterday, Faparusi said the step taken by Buhari had shored up his acceptability in the southwest, adding that this will translate to votes in 2019 presidential poll.
Faparusi was elated that the federal governmentâ€™s gesture came at the right time when the July 14 Ekiti governorship election was gathering momentum, saying Buhariâ€™s landmark steps will help the candidate of the APC, Dr Kayode Fayemi in the poll. The southwest people are grateful people who know how to appreciate and reciprocate good gestures. They voted for the late MKO Abiola in the cancelled June 12 presidential election not because he was from the region, but for his good philanthropic deeds across Nigeria.
â€œThe region shouldnâ€™t be oblivious of one fact, former President Olusegun Obasanjo was the greatest beneficiary of Abiolaâ€™s demise and he never deemed it fit to give him posthumous honour for paying
supreme price for Nigeria to assume democratic rule. Chief Obasanjo presided over a democratically constituted government for eight years and the issue of June 12 had no strand of meaning to him. This particular action made the bold step taken by President Buhari more rewarding. It signposted great honour, not only for the southwest but the entire Nigerians.
â€œWe must reciprocate the gesture by embracing APC in the southwest region. We must start manifesting this by voting massively for Dr Fayemi in 2018 election to give a sign that we are appreciative of what the government at the centre had doneâ€, he said.
Faparusi expressed confidence that the electorate will vote for Dr Fayemi in the coming election, saying people were already disillusioned with Governor Ayodele Fayoseâ€™s government that was owing salaries and pensions of workers.