Nigeria’s ex-presidents, Olusegun Obasanjo and Ibrahim Babangida were noticeably absent at a ceremony for the conferment of national honours on the presumed winner of June 12, 1993 presidential election, Chief MKO Abiola, and others.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF Boss Mustapha, on Tuesday informed the gathering that the two ex-presidents expressed regrets for their individual absence at the august event.
Mustapha spoke at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, venue of the posthumous investiture on Chief Moshood Abiola as Grand Commander of the Federal Republic; his running-mate, Babagana Kingibe as Grand Commander of the Order of Niger, GCON, and late human rights activist, Gani Fawehinmi, also as GCON.
“Further announcement on this will be made shortly,” Mustapha said in his welcome address at the ceremony attended by dignitaries across the country.
The conferment of the honour on the late Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola comes 25 years after the election, which is recognized as the freest in the country’s history.
It comes almost 20 years after Abiola died in detention after being jailed by the late military dictator, General Sani Abacha, for trying to claim his mandate.