MKO Abiola’s running mate in 1993, Babagana Kingibe, says Obasanjo was one of those who annulled the June 12 election.

Former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Amb Babagana Kingibe, has alleged that former President Olusegun Obasanjo was “one of the architects of the annulment” of the June 12, 1993 presidential election.

The June 12, 1993 election is widely regarded as Nigeria’s freest and fairest to this day.

Kingibe was MKO Abiola’s running mate in the election on the platform of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).

Now Kingibe has alleged that Obasanjo, who became Nigeria’s first democratically elected president in the 4th republic that followed the tense annulment period, was one of those who helped IBB make that decision.

The Nation quotes Kingibe as saying on an NTA program: “In the aftermath of the annulment, one of the architects of the annulment, former President Olusegun Obasanjo tried to get some elder statesmen (former presidents and so on); I think at the African Leadership Forum to see how the aftermath of the annulment could be addressed or to see how the problems arising from the annulment could be addressed”.

The Nation reports that Kingibe avoided the question of whether he should be regarded as a traitor, but offered the following by way of a response: “I think we are now going to celebrate the first of the June 12 being a Democracy Day. It is an opportunity to recall all the positive takeaways of the June 12 experience, what it represented and how we can learn lessons for the future.

“I don’t think it as an occasion for recriminations, who betrayed who, abandoned what. The whole process leading to June 12 was a unique experience in Nigerian political journey towards democracy.

“The facts of June 12, the elections that took place on that day, were unique. We have held many elections but the elections of June 12 were unique.

“The annulment of the elections was unique in the life of all Nigerians and being unique and novel, I think everybody reacted accordingly to their understanding of what reaction was required.

“I do not think that we have the time to go through who played what role, who did what on this occasion. All I said, let us celebrate the event of June 12.”