Democracy Day is a National Public holiday celebration in Nigeria on June 12. Not Until June 6, 2018, it was held annually on May 29.
It’s a day to marks the day the military handed over power to an elected civilian government in 1999, marking the beginning of the longest continuous civilian rule since Nigeria’s independence from colonial rule in 1960.
Nigeria’s Democracy Day is a public holiday to commentate on the restoration of democracy in the Federal Republic of Nigeria. it was usually celebrated on May 29 since it was the day the newly elected Olusegun Obasanjo took office as the President of Nigeria in 1999, ending multiple decades of military rule that began in 1966.
But on 6 June 2018, the President Buhari-led Federal Government of Nigeria declared June 12 to be the new Democracy Day. These were to commemorate the democratic election of MKO Abiola on 12 June 1993, in what has been condemned to be Nigeria’s free and fair elections. This was later wrongly canceled by Ibrahim Babangida. MKO was detained after he rightfully declared himself the President and he died mysteriously after it was said he drank a poisonous tea.
After Nigeria gained Independence on 1st October 1960 from the British government, they fell to so many military coups and led to civil war.
The beginning of democracy is the principle of popular sovereignty, which holds that government can be legitimated only by the will of those whom it governs and thus it can be understood why a military coup may not be seen as a democratic regime.
The end of military rule brought about a new beginning of electing a civilian government as well as the return of civil liberties, a free press, and an end to difficult arrests and torture.
As we Celebrate today’s Democracy Day, let’s hold forth to the baton given to us after we regain our Independence, and let’s unite together to support the growth and development of the country by selflessly voting for the people of our choice, not their choice. Because Democracy Day reminds us of the freedom that we have.
Happy Democracy Day!