This is the official blog of the Nigeria-based Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), a human rights organization which promotes, protects and projects the rights of Muslims. This group condemns terrorism and all acts of violence. Its motto is 'Dialogue, Not Violence'
Sunday, May 28, 2017
GIVE US JUNE 12, NOT MAY 29
GIVE US JUNE 12, NOT MAY 29
The Federal Government
has declared Monday, 29th May, 2017 as a holiday to mark this year’s
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) rejects May 29 as
Nigeria’s Democracy Day. It is fraudulent, unrealistic and escapist.
May 29 was picked by the
last military regime of General Abdul Salaam Abubakar because it marked the day
that the military handed over power to civilians after decades of military
dictatorship. But the soul of Nigerians is in the June 12, 1993 general
election whose result was criminally annulled by the military.
It is our considered opinion that June 12 should be
Nigeria’s real Democracy Day because June 12 election was adjudged by both
local and international observers as the most orderly, most peaceful and most
democratic election in the annals of Nigeria’s history. That election remains
celebrated today as the only one that was free of rigging, ballot box
snatching, thuggery, hooliganism and other related ugly incidents.
June 12 1993 was the
day all Nigerians decided to sink religious and ethnic differences. They voted
for the Muslim – Muslim ticket of Chief M. K. O. Abiola and Babagana Kingibe.
Nigerians spoke with one voice on that memorable day from Enugu to Kaora Namoda
and from Sokoto to Bayelsa. The churches rejoiced with the mosques on June 12
1993 and Nigeria truly became one.
One of the reasons for
our failure to resolve the problems facing Nigeria is the inability of our
leadership to face reality, to admit mistakes and to made amends. May 29 was a
grievous mistake. June 12 is the way forward. If we do not know where we are
going, at least we know where we are coming from. June 12 is where we are
coming from. Let us go back to it in order to jog our people’s memory, ignite
their passion and rekindle their patriotism.
Those who picked May
29 merely wish to switch attention from our collective will. May 29 is
enslavement and captivity. June 12 is freedom and liberty. It symbolizes unity
and epitomizes unconditional love. It is emancipation from the claws of
bourgeois politics, ethnic jingoism and corruption unlimited.
June 12 removed the veil from our eyes. It taught us to
seek leadership in competence, integrity and decency, not mediocrity, religious
affiliation or ethnicity. On June 12 we stand.
In conclusion, MURIC
urges the Federal Government and the ruling party to keep faith with the change
mantra by going back to June 12. Nigerians were promised change. We want that
change to manifest in the day recognized as Democracy Day. It must be the
people’s day, not the day picked by a tiny cabal. It must be the day of unity.
It must be the day of unlimited love. Give us June 12.
Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)