The Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) has described the death of the former national secretary of the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) Comrade Frank Ovie-Kokori, as a great loss to Nigeria and called on the federal government to immortalise him to appreciate his immense contribution to the enthronement of democracy in Nigeria.
Speaking on his demise, the spokesman of CUPP, Comrade Mark Adebayo, said Kokori remains a stature of immense proportion in the annals of pro- democracy activism in Nigeria.
According to him, his contributions to pro -democracy struggle in the country remain indelible, adding that he was a truthful and patriotic man who was consistent in his advocacy for democracy, in spite of threats to his life, personal interest.
“He persisted, he resisted and succeeded in mobilising NUPENG and PENGASSAN towards national patriotic assignments that contributed immensely to the end of military jackboots in Nigeria and he did so with patriotic flavour, with sincerity of purpose and with total commitment.
‘’Every effort to bribe him out of the struggle failed, and he remained committed to the struggle, not only to the struggle but for the actualisation of June 12, but also he remained committed to the safe return of Chief M K O Abiola, which unfortunately was not actualised.”
CUPP noted that Kokori would be remembered as one shining star in the constellation of activists that made sure that even though June 12 was not actualised but democracy was eventually brought to stay in Nigeria.
“He did so well and he became an exemplar. He became a world exemplar in what pro- democracy activism should look like. He was not just a Comrade fighting for labour rights, he was a man who fought for humanity, he will be remembered as somebody who fought for what is just, what is right, and for what is humane.
The coalition stated that Kokori has left a vacuum which would be difficult to replace.
“The Coalition of United Political Parties CUPP joined all other patriotic Nigerians to mourn his loss. He could have lived longer, there is no time we could accept it is okay for him to go, when he departed, we are now mourning him.
“We call on the federal government to honour him to the highest respect possible, by now we expect the federal government to do something to honour him, we are calling for his immortalisation one way or the other, may be by creating, we advocate for a labour university to be created in his honour,’’ CUPP said.