The Lagos State government has unveiled a new statue in honour of the late Chief MKO Abiola, the presumed winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election that was annulled.
The 37-feet statue was unveiled at the MKO Abiola Garden, Alapere area of Lagos State on Tuesday, June 12, 2018.
After then-military Head of State, Ibrahim Babangida, annulled the election, Abiola refused to concede his mandate and was imprisoned in 1994 by General Sani Abacha who had taken over government. Abiola died in custody under suspicious circumstances on July 7, 1998, a month after Abacha himself died mysteriously.
Speaking at the unveiling of the statue on Tuesday, Lagos governor, Akinwunmi Ambode said it will serve as a reminder of Abiola's legacy.
He said, "We are very happy to gather here today at the MKO Abiola garden to unveil this statue, a monument that will forever crystallize his legacy, serves as a reminder to the greatness that Chief Abiola represents in our socio-political landscape.
"As an individual, he transcended race, tribe and religion. He appealed to all Nigerians and we voted for him. Sadly, he lost his life trying to secure his mandate.
"Even though he was from another state, Lagos was his home. And we recognize his contribution to our state and our democracy. It is now my honour to unveil this statue as a monument to symbolize democracy and the supremacy of the voice of the people."
One of Abiola's sons, Abdulmuminu, was at the event to thank Ambode for honouring his father with the statue.
President Muhammadu Buhari recently announced his decision to confer the post-humous award of Grand Commander of the Order of the Federal Republic (GCFR) on the late Abiola, and formally did so during an investiture ceremony at the Presidential Villa on Tuesday, June 12, 2018.