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Nobel Laureate Ṣoyinka to President Buhari: You confuse Nigerians when you honor Abiola in one breath and praise his tormentor in another – Tola Adenle

June 18, 2018

Nigeria

 

Image result for images of Wole Soyinka

Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka [Google Images]

At a ceremony at Abuja, Nigeria’s capital on June 12, 2018, President Buhari formally conferred a posthumous national honour of Grand Commander of the Federal Republic (GCFR) – highest award in the country on M.K.O. Abiola, winner of Nigeria’s freest election which saw a Yoruba Moslem from Nigeria’s Southwest win election to Nigeria’s highest office with a running mate from Nigeria’s Moslem North. Things were not always like that: elections were always won along ethnic lines or through alliances of two of the three major ethnic groups that would shut out the third!

Buhari also honoured Abiola’s running mate, Ambassador Baba Gana Kingibe, and the late fiery and well-respected human rights activist, Gani Fawehinmi with the national award of Grand Commander of the Niger (GCON). Lawyer Fawehinmi was also a Yoruba who would take on cases and causes regardless of the parts of Nigeria the aggrieved came from.

Soyinka referenced his speeach on Buhari’s recent accolade on Abacha as a man, “no matter what people may say … who built infrastructure …” while speaking at the investiture of the man who won the June 12, 1993 presidential elections.

The president’s robust endorsement and praise of Abacha definitely rings hollow in view of his “apology on behalf of the Federal Government the nation’s apology to the family of late MKO Abiola, who got the highest vote [in the election], and to those that lost their loved ones in the course of the June 12 struggle”.

Here are Soyinka’s words at Abuja on Tuesday, June 12, 2018 – fifteen years after Abiola, a staunch Moslem, won from every corner of Nigeria despite having a Moslem running mate. He would later die mysteriously after drinking what must have been a strange brew of tea in the presence of then UN Secretary-General, Ghanaian Kofi Anan, a representative of the US government AND Abacha junta representative.

“l will like to make a request. Mr President, since we are honouring heroes of democracy today, l will like to request that you manage to stop creating confusion in the minds of Nigerians. It is not possible to honour MKO Abiola in one breadth and admire his tormentor in another breadth.
“Most of what l wanted to say have been actually knocked off my mouth by one singular gesture – the presidential apology. It is a dimension which l did not expect from today’s ceremony.

The Nobel Laureate apparently wanted those congregated at Abuja – and Nigerians as well as the world to know where Buhari’s recent accolade on Abacha emanated from – He served as Abacha-appointee as Head of the powerful Petroleum Task Force (PTF) which built the “infrastructure” he credits the leader-thief with: “Loyalty is all very well but loyalty can become perverse if that loyalty is retained to an individual who if he were alive today would be before the International Court of Crimes against humanity .”

While Soyinka did not once mention the name of the “notorious corrupt ruler” whom everybody understood was the evil ruler who stole hundreds of millions of dollars, hundreds of milions of pound Sterling plus uncountable billions in Nigerian currency, it was apparent Abacha was foremost in his mind when he suggested that the country deserves a “Hall of Shame”.

Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka referenced recent accolade heaped by Buhari on Abacha: a man, “no matter what people may say … who built infrastructure …” while speaking at the investiture of the man who won the June 12, 1993 presidential elections. Did Hitler not build infrastructure, BTW?

The president’s robust endorsement and praise of Abacha definitely rings hollow in view of his “apology on behalf of the Federal Government the nation’s apology to the family of late MKO Abiola, who got the highest vote [in the election], and to those that lost their loved ones in the course of the June 12 struggle”.

Here are Soyinka’s words at Abuja on Tuesday, June 12, 2018 – fifteen years after Abiola, a staunch Moslem, won from every corner of Nigeria despite having a Moslem running mate. He would later die mysteriously after drinking what must have been a strange brew of tea in the presence of then UN Secretary-General, Ghanaian Kofi Anan, a representative of the US government AND Abacha junta representative.

“l will like to make a request. Mr President, since we are honouring heroes of democracy today, l will like to request that you manage to stop creating confusion in the minds of Nigerians. It is not possible to honour MKO Abiola in one breadth and admire his tormentor in another breadth.
“Most of what l wanted to say have been actually knocked off my mouth by one singular gesture – the presidential apology. It is a dimension which l did not expect from today’s ceremony.
“Loyalty is all very well but loyalty can become perverse if that loyalty is retained to an individual who if he were alive today would be before the International Court of Crimes against humanity,” the Nobel laureate added.

While Soyinka did not once mention the name of the “notorious corrupt ruler” whom everybody understood was the evil ruler who stole hundreds of millions of dollars, hundreds of milions of pound Sterling plus uncountable billions in Nigerian currency, it was apparent Abacha was foremost in his mind when he suggested that the country deserves a “Hall of Shame”.

The Nobel Laureate apparently wanted those congregated at Abuja – and Nigerians as well as the world to know where his recent accolade on Buhari emanated from [Buhari served as Abacha-appointee as Head of the powerful Petroleum Task Force (PTF) which built the “infrastructure” he credits the leader-thief with]: “Loyalty is all very well but loyalty can become perverse if that loyalty is retained to an individual who if he were alive today would be before the International Court of Crimes against humanity .”

Soyinka informed Buhari, his listeners at the ceremony and Nigerians everywhere that he does not agree that Nigeria’s grandest honor, GCFR, to MKO “is closure to the events of June 12” as “there are far too many traumatised individuals walking around the streets, pauperised individuals as a result of the policies and attitudes of one of the most brutal dictators, in fact, the most brutal dictator that this country has ever known.”

RELATED ESSAY:
https://emotanafricana.com/2018/06/07/2019-elections-buhari-goes-all-out-for-yoruba-votes-heaps-honors-galore-on-fawehinmi-late-abiola-winner-of-nigerias-freest-election-tola-adenle/

MONDAY, JUNE 18, 2018. 12:24 P.M. [GMT].

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