There’s need to sustain democracy in Nigeria – Abubakar


Former Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd), has opined that there is the need for constant nurturing and vigilance as one of the requirements to sustain democracy in the country.

Represented by Gen. Adamu Jidda on Thursday in Abuja at the second edition of ThisNigeria Newspaper Gold Prize and Annual Lecture Awards on the theme of the lecture; “25 Years of Nigeria’s Unbroken Democracy – Prospects and Possibilities”, Abubakar noted that electoral integrity, human rights, economic development and social justice remained critical areas that demand the country’s collective attention and action.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), he believed that the nation’s democratic journey had not been without its trials.

He stated that democracy was an evolving process, saying that the past 25 years have taught the country that it required constant nurturing and vigilance.

According to him, “We have faced political turbulence, economic fluctuation and social upheaval, yet through it all, the Nigerian spirit has remained indomitable.”

Abubakar explained that Nigerians had shown that despite their differences, they were united in their commitment to conducting elections that were inclusive, prosperous and democratic.

He expressed optimism that the next 25 years and more would certainly bring challenges and opportunities, believing that it was the collective responsibility of Nigerians to ensure that the foundations were built and strengthened and that the democratic institutions were fortified.

He employed Nigerians to take a moment to reflect on the remarkable journey Nigeria had undertaken over the past quarter of a century.

In 1999, he observed that the nation embarked on the path of democratic governance, a path marked by aspirations, challenges and unwavering commitment to the principle of freedom, justice and equality.

He advised that the country must recognise the role of the media in the democratic journey, saying that the press had been the watchdog of democracy, by holding leaders accountable, shedding light on issues that matter and providing a platform for diverse voices to be heard.

Abubakar stated that Nigeria in particular, had been at the forefront of that endeavour, championing the cause of free and fair journalism

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