Tukur quits partisan politics, PDP leaders absent from birthday ceremony
FORMER Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) national chairman, Bamanga Tukur, yesterday announced his retirement from partisan politics.
Tukur, at a ceremony to mark his 80th birthday in Abuja, also charged the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to hasten to put measures in place for the reduction of poverty even as he advised all the nation’s leaders to support government in ensuring that dividends of democracy gets to everyone.
Curiously, no serving member of the Uche Secondus-led PDP National Working Committee (NWC) was present at the ceremony.
Members of the Haliru Bello-led PDP Board of Trustees were also absent except the presence of the board’s secretary Jibrin Walid, who was there in his personal capacity.
In a speech at the ceremony, Tukur said:
“I deem it fit to use this opportunity of my 80th birthday celebration to announce my retirement from partisan politics. It is time to say goodbye to formal politics. I have used several political platforms to serve my country. It is time to rest. I leave partisan politics for the younger generation. I want to be a statesman and an adviser. At 80, I feel I can serve our dear nation more in the capacity of a statesman and father figure.”
He commended former President Goodluck Jonathan for “fashioning out a credible electoral system for Nigeria and for his statesman-like concession of victory at the last presidential election.”
Tukur called on Nigerians to support the Federal government under Buhari to facilitate a peaceful regime in Nigeria.
He explained how he attempted to introduce sanity into the PDP during his reign as it’s national chairman just as he delivered a sermon on party supremacy and the need to play the game of politics according to the rule.
However, during the leadership crisis that later contributed to the fall of the PDP as a ruling party, Tukur was unceremoniously suspended by the then Ahmadu Adamu Muazu-led NWC.
Muazu was equally absent from the anniversary celebrations.
Adamawa State Governor, Bingo Jubrila, acknowledged the fatherly role Tukur played in his life.
Despite the absence of its leaders from the event, the PDP sent a birthday message to Tukur, and said it remained proud that the octogenarian, who is one of its founding fathers, has made indelible marks in business and politics within and outside the country.
The birthday message was released by PDP National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh, on Tuesday.