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June 12 PDP senator says Dec. 31 should be declared "democracy destruction day" too

Abaribe's statement unsettled the plenary on Thursday as loyalists of the President rose to shut him out.

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A Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) senator, Enyinnaya Abaribe, has said that December 31 should be declared as "democracy destruction day" as it was the day the Muhammadu Buhari military government unseated ex-President Shehu Shagari in a coup.

He said this in reaction to the posthumous award of Grand Commander of the Federal Republic (GCFR) conferred on Moshood Abiola, presumed winner of the 1993 presidential election.

Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has called for the immediate release of Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe. play

Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe

(Ripples Nigeria)


Speaking at the plenary on Thursday, June 7, during a debate on a motion regarding the Abiola honour, Abaribe said that the Presidency needs to "quickly" send an amendment to the Honours Act for the award to be proper and legal.

Honours Act amendment

The motion was sponsored by the senator representing Ogun central,  Lanre Tejuosho, and backed by Biodun Olujimi, the senator representing Ekiti south.

"I support what senator Olujimi and also what the deputy senate president had said, insisting that there may have to be an amendment of the constitution," he said.

"I also want to add that it would also be necessary for the executive to quickly bring to the national assembly, an amendment to the honours act which states that there cannot be posthumous award. Now that they have jumped the gun to do posthumous award, it would be necessary for us to quickly amend that act.

"Finally, I want to also propose another day since we are now moving in the right direction, saying that democracy is needed, I want to propose that we also designate 31st December as democracy destruction day because that was the day that this same president did a coup."

Abaribe's last statement threw the session into disorderliness as loyalists of the President rose to shut him out.

ALSO READ: Ex-CJN Belgore says award of posthumous GCFR to Abiola is illegal

Shagari was ousted on December 31, 1983, by Buhari alongside other military officers.

Buhari was the a General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the 3rd armored division, Jos, at the time.

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