Bamanga Tukur: The Resurgence of PDP

By Atek’ojo Samson Usman
March, 2012 the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) would hold its National Convention.The party adjudged as the biggest political party in Africa would have among others, its National Chairmanship slot contested for.
Presently, top notchers of the party, particularly, from the north easern states of Borno, Adamawa, Gombe and Bauchi are leading the pack of contestants. They have all been perfecting strategies for the onslaught in order to have their way as the party national chairman
. Interestingly, the national chairmanship position has been zoned to north east. Alhaji Bamanga Tukur,a political heavy weight from Adamawa state, a one time governor of old Gongola state in the botched first republic between (1979–1983), and currently, Chairman of Africa Business Round Table (ABR) and Africa Peer Review Group, as well as Presidential Economic Adviser to some African nations is one of the leading contender for the slot. Others include Professor Jibril Aminu from Adamawa state, Senator Babayo Garuba Gamawa, who is the immediate past deputy governor of Bauchi state, former governor of Bauchi state, Ahmed Adamu Muazu, Musa Babayo, (Talban Katagum), Kaulaha Aliyu, Senator Abba Aji from Borno and Abbas Bunu. The number is however, still increasing.
Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, a founding member of the PDP and former member of the Board of Trustees of the party, understands the cosmogony of politics from the grass root level having being governor of old Gongola state.
His entrance into the race has, unarguably, sent jitters down the spines of other contenders, considering his political pedigree which is contemporaneous with the envisaged quality of would-be national chairman of the People’s Democratic Party.
The party which has been ruling since 1999 after the entrenchment of democracy continue to witness what analysts refer to as absurdities in the ways the affairs of the party were handled by some past national chairmen.
Lack of good leadership has brought so much crisis within the party. Several factions have emerged that is threatening the fortunes of the pa highly favoured to be the next chairman of the party, submitted that in strengthening democracy, he is ready to face the challenges inherent in taking progressive decision so as to position the party for greater tomorrow.
Alhaji Tukur has always been convinced that the task of leadership should be seen from the perspective of sacrifice, which is a condition that precedes permanent success.
The vision of Peoples Democratic Party is not only to be a foremost ruling party in Nigeria, but to rule the African continent. That could only be achieved through pragmatism, astuteness, accountability, transparency and cohesiveness of the party’s national chairman
To attain a robust political, economic and social status for Nigeria, the chairman of the ruling political party, should be a man that is not only versatile, but must also possess strong contacts across the board. This is important.
Fortunately, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur’s extensive international contacts would come handy. The recognition accorded to him by the United Nations as Chairman of African Business Round Table, Presidential Economic Adviser to some of African countries, as well as his role as a trusted and reliable counsel to the United Nations, U.S and the European Union, has equiped him to fit into the highly exalted position of the chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
While briefing newsmen at his campaign office in Abuja recently, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur observed that democracy remains the will of the people, and as such, he calls on all delegates from the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory to vote for him en-masse so that he could propel PDP to greater heights,..
Reacting to imposition of candidates which, the leadership of the party had been accused of perpetrating at previous convention, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur stressed that the current leadership of the party has long seen imposition of candidates as an unpopular practice, which is capable of derailing the successes of the party. He expressed confidence that what is on ground presently would allow for free and fair contest, where all the votes of the delegates counts.
Investigations conducted by National Mail has however, revealed that the battle for the chairmanship position of the party has been hifted to the presidency in order to get the nod of President Goodluck Jonathan before the convention.
President Jonathan who is naturally introversive and highly unpredictable seems not to give a close tab to all the contestants so that his body language would not be read by newsmen. But sources from the office of Political adviser to the President, Alhaji Ahmed Gulak reveals that absolute loyalty, untainted integrity, political antecedents and experience would do the magic.
While reiterating his commitment to party ideals, the chairmanship hopeful said, he is seeking the support of elder statesmen of the party and the National Working committee (NWC) as well as political leaders through consultations, which he has started a long time ago. In lending credence to the move, an inside source at the Wadata House, Wuse, the headquarters of PDP who would not want his name in print, emphasized that, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur has been consulting widely and stated that from what he knows about him through his friend, he commands high profile charisma to take PDP to the next level. According to t5he source, “Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, former governor of old Gongola state has been consulting widely on his intention to become the next national chairman of Peoples Democratic Party and I think from what my friend told me about him, he has the high profile charisma to take the party – PDP to the next level”, he stated.
In a related development, an aide to the governor of Niger State who is the chairman of Northern governors forum, Dr Muazu Babangida Aliyu confided in our correspondent in Minna that the issue of national chairman of PDP in the next national congress that has been zoned to North East remains on the front burner. That the northern governors were already on top of the matter so as to determine where their pendulum of support would swings to.
According to the source, Dr Babangida Aliyu was over heard saying that the support would among other things, be hinged on charisma, political clout, international connection, wealth of experience and willingness to foster unity among the party faithfuls.
However, the race is becoming unwieldy day by day, taking into cognisance the number of contestants from the northeast where it has been zoned to. But Bamanga Tukur is banking on his many years of unparallel services and management of both public and private institutions as being fit for the top job.
Alhaji Bamanga Tukur is no doubt man of impeccable character, who has focus, foresight and resilience to successfuly pilot the affairs of the party.His critics from the other side of the divide point at his age as a barrier to his ambition. In reaction to this and according to the document obtained from his Director General, BMT Campaign Organisation in Abuja, Alhaji Abu Fari, Tukur described his age as exceptionally matured and experienced, which is indeed a helpful and necessary criteria for the chairmanship of such a large political party – the PDP. It further posited that as an older person, Bamanga Tukur’s ambition is expected to be a product of deep calculation and wide consultations. “He would work amicably with the President and the National Assembly, he would offer quality leadership and command respect, especially, as the President and the National assembly would be facing great national issues in months and few years ahead (e.g. labour issues and national security challenges, which will sometimes pitch the Executive and the Legislature on collision course.
A matured and experience Party National Chairman would be the best ombudsman, who is seen to be effective at ensuring that both sides sheath their swords.
The performance and management of the National Assembly currently by Senate President David Mark is a case in point where experience leadership and counsel is indeed better to effectively manage institutions that accommodate a variety of ages and interest groups”, the statement said.
In the statement, Alhaji Abu Fari was hopeful that his Bamanga Tukur would avoid the mistakes of past chairmen of the party given the ethnic/political fault lines that the last national elections was exposed to.He described Alhaji Bamanga Tukur as a bridge builder who commands widespread respect capable of uniting disparate sides in the party and woo back most members who defected from the party for one reason or the other. The statement further reads in part: “…… Given Bamanga Tukur”s extensive political experience and contact base across ethnic divides, he stands out amongst other namesbeing touted for the post”.

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About newsmailonline
Moses George is a versatile journalist/prolific writer.His career as a journalist dates back to over 10 years. During this period, he has worked for several media organizations across the country. His reports and writings serve as references to credible newspapers, magazines and web sites. His passion for investigative journalism has revealed dark secrets involving high level corruption in both the private and public sectors.He covers high profile events for corporate organizations and individuals. Moses George is the Editor-in Chief of National Mail, a general interest magazine that circulates across Nigeria. He is also the Editor of News Mail, an online publication that features people, events and issues. George can be reached on 234 080 6672 2600 or at nationalmailonline @yahoo.com

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