The family of the late Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland and acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 election, Bashorun M.K.O Abiola has rejected the posthumous Centenary award to the late business mogul.
Kola, the late politician’s eldest son on Friday described the award as “inappropriate.”
He said “for us, what the government is doing is laudable. But our family will only accept what is appropriate. If what they are trying to give him is a gold award for the centenary, we don’t consider that to be appropriate. With a gold centenary award, it means we have not left where we were when they tried to rename the University of Lagos after him. We said then that it was inappropriate.”
On what honour would be appropriate for the memory of the late businessman, his son said “we leave the government to figure that out.”
The families of the late Gani Fawehinmi and Fela Anikulapo Kuti have earlier stated that they would not be accepting the posthumous awards for their patriarchs.
Mohammed, Gani Fawehinmi’s eldest son had stated on Thursday that it would be “inexpedient” for them to receive the award in the face of recent events in the country. Moreover, he made it known that the family would not be standing on the same podium with General Ibrahim Babangida to receive an award.
He also pointed out that “in the list of the awards recipients published by the Federal Government, was the name of former military dictator, General Ibrahim Babangida, who as military president, severally detained and tortured our late father. In the course of one of such illegal and inhuman detentions, our late father’s cell was sprayed with toxic substances while in Gashua prison in 1987. The cumulative effect of that dastardly action led to our father, a non- smoker, contracting lung cancer which eventually led to his death on September 5, 2009.”
Similarly, the award also generated a response from Femi Kuti, who tweeted “we have not heard such but I can speak for myself, Federal Government should first apologise for the killing of our grandmother and the burning of Kalakuta”.
The Federal Government has listed 100 people to be honoured as part of the celebration of the centenary of the existence of the country.