June 12 celebration of Democracy Day in Nigeria is a national public exercise, observed to rejoice over the advent of democratic rule in Nigeria.
As for May 29, it marks the Democracy Day, 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.
The May 29 Democracy day celebration is a tradition that has been held annually, beginning in year 2000.
12th June: All You Need To Know About Nigeria’s Democracy Day
However, the 12th of June was formerly known as Moshood Kashimawo Abiola Day, celebrated in Lagos, Nigeria and some south western states of Nigeria.
It is no longer news that the Nigeria’s Democracy Day is a public holiday to commemorate the restoration of democracy in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Following history, May 29 was initially the official democracy day in Nigeria, citing when the newly elected Olusegun Obasanjo took office as the President of Nigeria in 1999, ending multiple decades of military rule that began in 1966 and had been interrupted only by a brief period of democracy from 1979 to 1983.
Eye9ja recalls that on June 6, 2018, in about eight days after the Nation celebrated the May 29, 2018 Democracy day in grand style, the President Buhari-led Federal Government of Nigeria then declared June 12 to be the new Democracy Day; this gave birth to a double celebration of both MKO Abiola and the June 12 Democracy Day celebration as declared by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government.
This reliable online news platform recalls that President Buhari was inaugurated on May 29, being the Democracy day, but the President refused to deliver his usual inaugural speech as the Federal Government had announced that the inauguration would be low-key with most of the events to be held on June 12, the Democracy Day.
”Since the first observance of June 12 as Democracy Day falls into an election year, and as a measure to sustain June 12 as Democracy Day, the celebration of the inauguration and the advancement of democracy in the country will now take place on June 12,” minister of information, Lai Mohammed had said.
These were done to commemorate the democratic election of MKO Abiola on June 12, 1993, in what has been adjudged to be Nigeria’s freest and fairest elections.
However, the election of MKO Abiola was cancelled by the Ibrahim Babangida Junta as MKO Abiola was later detained after he declared himself the President.