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10 Major Takeaways From President Tinubu’s Democracy Day Address

Posted by Samuel on Wed 12th Jun, 2024 - tori.ng

In his speech, he reflected on the nation’s journey from the struggles of military rule to becoming Africa’s most populous democracy.

Bola Tinubu

On Wednesday, President Bola urged leaders to reaffirm their dedication to the principles of inclusivity, accountability, and transparency, aiming to ensure a flourishing democracy that withstands the test of time for generations to come.

In his speech, he reflected on the nation’s journey from the struggles of military rule to becoming Africa’s most populous democracy.

Here are the major takeaways from President Tinubu’s Democracy Day address:

1. He paid tribute to the heroes of democratic movement

Tinubu pays tribute to the individuals who sacrificed their lives for the nation’s democratic struggle, including MKO Abiola, Kudirat Abiola, General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, and others.

According to the President, Nigeria lost great heroes and heroines along the way. In this struggle, the winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, Chief MKO Abiola, the most significant symbol of our democratic struggle, his wife, Kudirat, General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua and Pa Alfred Rewane, among others sacrificed their very lives. 

He also honoured the memories of Chief Anthony Enahoro, Chief Abraham Adesanya, Commodore Dan Suleiman, Chief Arthur Nwankwo, Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife, Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu, Chief Frank Kokori, Chief Bola Ige, Chief Adekunle Ajasin, Chief Ganiyu Dawodu, Chief Ayo Fasanmi, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, Chief Olabiyi Durojaiye, Dr. Beko Ransome-Kuti, Chima Ubani, and others who have transited to the higher realm. 

2. He acknowledged the sacrifices of some living heroes

Tinubu praised the sacrifices of General Alani Akinrinade, Professor Bolaji Akinyemi, Professor Wole Soyinka, Chief Ralph Obioha, Chief Cornelius Adebayo, among many others, should never be forgotten. For at least six years, they bore the pains and difficulties of life in exile.  

He said while the exiled pro-democracy activists kept the fire burning, their comrades at home sustained the pressure on the military brass hats. Among the latter are Olisa Agbakoba, Femi Falana, Abdul Oroh, Senator Shehu Sani, Governor Uba Sani, Chief Olu Falae, and other National Democratic Coalition leaders such as Chief Ayo Adebanjo and Chief Ayo Opadokun. 

4. Role of Activists and Journalists:

Tinubu acknowledged the contributions of pro-democracy activists, journalists, and media establishments in fighting against military dictatorship.

He said Nigeria could not have won the battle against military dictatorship without the irrepressible Nigerian journalists who mounted the barricades along with the pro-democracy activists. 

5. Democracy as a way of life: 

Tinubu emphasized that democracy is more than just holding elections; it is a way of life that includes freedom of speech, liberty, and peaceful transitions of power.

He stated that the nation exited the yoke of military rule in 1999 to become the most populous democracy on African soil, the beacon of democratic self-determination for the black race and one of the largest democracies in the world.

He maintained that this change stands as a pivotal moment in human history. From this change, we shall never turn, nor shall the annals of mankind’s progress forget the sublime meaning of this great moment. 

6. Commitment to Democracy: 

Tinubu vowed to protect the rights, freedoms, and liberties of Nigerian citizens and pledges to cement democracy as the nation’s way of life.

He noted that Democracy is neither a foreign nor abstract concept devoid of real-life meaning for us. Neither can they afford to reduce or minimalise it to being nothing but the mere holding of periodic elections where one candidate and party outdo another. 

7. Economic Reforms: 

Tinubu acknowledged the economic challenges facing Nigeria and highlights ongoing reforms aimed at creating a stronger economic foundation for future growth.

He stated that he understands the economic difficulties Nigeria face as a nation. 

He said the country’s economy has been in desperate need of reform for decades. It has been unbalanced because it was built on the flawed foundation of over-reliance on revenues from the exploitation of oil. 

He confirmed that reforms they have initiated are intended to create a stronger, better foundation for future growth. 

8. Labour Relations: 

Tinubu discussed negotiations with organized labour on a new national minimum wage, emphasizing the importance of cooperation over conflict in resolving disputes.

He noted that no one was arrested or threatened. Instead, the labour leadership was invited to break bread and negotiate toward a good-faith resolution.  

9. Principled Leadership: 

He underscored the importance of reasoned discussion and principled compromise in democratic governance.

Tinubu insists that he takes on this vital task without fear or favour and he commits himself to this work until they have built a Nigeria where no man is oppressed.     

10. Call to Action: 

Tinubu urged Nigerians to embrace the challenges of the future and to continue moving forward together toward progress and prosperity.


Source: The Nation

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