Opinion: PDP crisis – Why Tukur should be allowed to serve out his term in office

by Simon Christian Chukwu


(Tukur) is from Adamawa state in Northeast, apparently the same geo-political zone and state with the dissident former vice-president, Atiku Abubakar. And going by the zoning formula of the PDP, Atiku’s presidential ambition has suffered another puncture in the leg.

Since the inception of the largest political party in Africa, the Peoples’ Democratic Party, there’s been a long standing tradition of circuitously puncturing the balloon of the National Chairmen halfway into their administration. They are either kicked out of office in controversial circumstance, forced to resign scurrilously or get drowned in the pool of political shenanigans.

Historically, no PDP National Chairman since 1999 has ever endured controversies for long. None has either kissed the office goodbye with his head held up high. From the days of, Solomon Lar, the very first National Chairman of the party, to Chief Barnabas Germade; to Audu Ogbeh; to Ahmadu Ali; to Vincent Ogbulafor; to Okwesilieze Nwodo, the National Chairmanship has always been whittled with crises. This trend has since continued till date.

Dr. Bamanga Tukur, the current National Chairman of the PDP has barely spent two years in office with the hullabaloo for him to be booted out by some political gladiators resonating continuously. Technically, the emergence of Tukur was the making of the Presidency. As some members of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum – who have always been the power house determining who gets what, when and how – were caught napping. The President ceded two other prominent positions to the governors’ collective decision and when the time for such benevolence to be reciprocated came, they all cleared the way for his candidate, Tukur to sail through.

President Jonathan needed someone who will do his bidding and Tukur was more than prepared to do it. With his firm resoluteness and unwavering allegiance to deliver the job for President Jonathan, he endeared himself to the admiration of the President. And subsequently went on to become his ‘Chosen One’.

Since the emergence of Tukur in March 2012, there is barely a month that he is not bedeviled with crisis – both at the state and national levels. Presently, Governors in some states like Rivers, Adamawa, Kano to mention a few, have had to endure a state divided right under their nose. The governors have lost grip over their political party state executive committee. The impasse has gotten to the point where many feel they can no longer abide under the same umbrella with Tukur and his style of leadership and are therefore calling for his exit. The Atiku Abubakar/ Kuwa Baraje led faction of the party are putting the axing out of Tukur as a conditional clause before normalcy will be restored.

However, with the second term ambition of President Jonathan already set in motion – unofficially – in 2013, it will be difficult for the President to heed to such call. The President more than ever needs the experience of Tukur and that’s why he ‘chose’ him. He needs the ‘fixing’ skills of a fixer and that’s why he opted for the dexterous Chief Tony Anenih to succeed Chief Olusegun Obasanjo as the BOT Chairman. He needs the loyalty of the PDP governors, that’s why he settled for the likes Gov. Godswill Akpabio to lead the PDP Governors Forum. He needs the unalloyed support of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, that’s why he opted for Gov. Jona Jang of Plateau state against the recalcitrant Gov. Rotimi Amaechi. All these positioning and repositioning is to smoothen the road to 2015.

Therefore, it will be cumbersome for Bamanga Tukur to be kicked out of office like was done to some of his predecessors. Tukur’s emergence connoted several calculations. He is from Adamawa state in Northeast, apparently the same geo-political zone and state with the dissident former vice-president, Atiku Abubakar. And going by the zoning formula of the PDP, Atiku’s presidential ambition has suffered another puncture in the leg. The agitation is that Tukur’s head as the National Chairman of the party is sacrificed to pave way for Atiku’s long-frustrated presidential ambition.

Normally, Dr. Bamanga Tukur’s tenure as the Chairman is expected to elapse after 4 years just like other elected members of the National Executive Council. But will the impatient and desperate politicians indulge Tukur to serve out his term without pulling stunts? Tukur was quoted some months ago as saying, “I am not resigning and I have no intention of doing so as an elected National Chairman of PDP”. He went further to pontificate, “I am not looking for anything at my age”. Therefore, since Tukur is not looking for anything at his age as an octogenarian, he has a daunting task of not only surpassing the records of his predecessors in office by serving out his 4 year term, but to also deliver the block votes to President Jonathan in 2015. How he will achieve that remains a nut for the benevolent spirits to crack.


Simon Christian Chukwu was ex-Editor-In-Chief Psychology Press Organization, and he tweets from @xtianrooy


Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

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