The relevance of June 12 -Baba Gana Kingibe
Baba Gana Kingibe is from Kanuri extraction in Borno State Nigerian. A former lecturer who left lecturing for broadcasting and later moved into politics, he had so many high-level political appointments. Amb. Kingibe was the running mate of MKO Abiola. He shed light on June 12 relevance.
Oluwadamilare Daniels reports…
“To me there was nothing important about May 29th, it is a day that a democratically elected government took over from the military and that was not the first time in the history of Nigeria, former president Olusegun Obasanjo played roles in first and second occasions, he handed over as military head of state to a democratically elected civilian president Shehu Shagari, second time he took over from rtd. General Abdulsalami Abubakar as an elected president so May 29th is not as important as June 12.”
He continued “Nigerians were fed up with the military. The military themselves were eager to go back to the barracks, so political parties were created for elections to take place.
The democratic process of the election of June 12 was not present at the elections of 1999 because in 1999 there was no wrestling of power from the military. The military themselves were ready to go but, June 12 was a process were the political classes were putting pressure on the military to go and transition programmes were held, election council were created the pressure was high so there was a power struggle between the politicians, Nigerian people and the military all these combined to make June 12 relevant to democracy than May 29th.”
Furthermore he said “We worked and laboured for June 12, it required a lot of planning, strategising, sacrifices and campaigns which took us to almost every local government in this country, we connected with people, we saw peoples’ reactions towards us, all these were orchestrated for us to come out victoriously on election day.”
He highlighted some regrets on June 12 “My regrets frankly is that we were not able to actualize June 12, many did not know Chief Abiola very well they only have some ideas of him as a politician, he was in NPN and so on but, they did not know the man Chief Abiola and what he stood for.
For me I knew him even before we went into politics and began to work together for the elections… you see it is Nigeria’s loss that we never had president Abiola in power.”
He had great passion, ideas, vision for this country and for the populace he has aspirations drawn from his own background so to speak ‘from grass to grace’.
This I regret for my country and my people because we are not supposed to be where we are if, he was given the chance to take the trajectory for Nigeria’s future.
Without been sentimental let us move up.” He concluded.