Babangida Told Us We Were On Our Own If We Announced Results Of 1993 Election Won By MKO Abiola —Ex-Electoral Commissioner Chair, Nwosu | #NwokeukwuMascot
|Prof. Humphrey Nwosu
The former Chairman of the National Electoral Commission (NEC), Prof. Humphrey Nwosu has narrated how former military dictator, Ibrahim Babangida told NEC officials that they would be on their own if they decided to continue and conclude the collation of results for the 1993 presidential election.
The military junta headed by Babangida annulled the 1993 election which was contested between Moshood Abiola of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and Bashir Tofa of the National Republican Convention (NRC).
The election was held in Nigeria on 12 June 1993, the first since the 1983 military coup ended the country's Second Republic.
Although not officially announced by the national electoral body as it was annulled by the military junta, the unofficial election results showed that Abiola of the SDP won the election.
Because Babangida cancelled the elections due to alleged electoral irregularities even though it was widely adjudged as the freest election in the country’s history, the winner of the election was never announced.
An unpopular interim civilian government and protests over the annulment ultimately resulted in the continuation of military rule in the nation, with Sani Abacha later hijacking power to become the military head of state through a bloodless coup.
Narrating the events that unfolded before and after the election was annulled to Sahara TV on the sidelines of the launch of his book, ‘Laying the Foundation for Nigeria’s Democracy: My Account of June 12’. Nwosu said Babangida and the military cabal disregarded the desire of the electoral empire to conclude and announce the election results.
He said, “When we got there (Aso Rock), Babangida said ‘NEC, what is your position on this election? I was the chairman of NEC, and I said give us two minutes so that it will not be Humphrey Nwosu’s decision so that it will be that of NEC.
“We went to one of the rooms… we agreed we didn’t have anything to do with politics of this country, they should allow us to conclude and announce the results. Whoever did not like the outcome should go to the tribunal. We are an institution; allow us to work. We came out with this report. We said, ‘Sir, allow us to conclude this election and announce the results.’ He said ‘Okay, you people are on your own.’”