President Muhammadu Buhari has renamed the national stadium in Abuja after a popular politician and a presumed winner of the 1993 presidential election, Alhaji Moshood Abiola (late). The election was cancelled by the military government of Ibrahim Babangida. Abiola was imprisoned after he allegedly declared himself ‘the President of Nigeria.’ Abiola later died in prison.
Buhari in 2018 recognised Abiola’s mandate by conferring on him the country’s highest national honour, Grand Commander of the Federal Republic, reserved only for presidents. He also declared June 12, the day the election held, as Nigeria’s democracy day. Since 1999, democracy day was celebrated on May 29. Wednesday was the first time the celebration happened on June 12.
In his speech during Nigeria’s 20th year of uninterrupted democracy, Buhari said the national stadium will henceforth be known as Moshoo Abiola Stadium. “I declared June 12 in memory of late Abiola … and I have also named the Abuja Stadium after Late Moshood Abiola,”Buhari said at the event held at the Eagles Square, Abuja.
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