Editor's note: The future of Nigeria's democratic and political future landscape rests on those saddled with the responsibility of choosing the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
In this opinion by Chukwudi Ania, he posits that of all the aspirants, only Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto state possesses the leadership quality coupled with his experience to fly the flag of the PDP in 2019.
Dear PDP delegates,
Your presence in Port Harcourt for the historic convention, remember that your decision is a choice not only for the development of democracy in Nigeria alone but for the future of Nigeria. In the near future, you will sit back and remember the decision you took and either commend yourself for contributing to the positive history of Nigeria or setting it on the path retrogression. What do you want history to remember you for?
Nigeria at the moment is at a precipice, ready to fly and take its place as the giant of Africa or sink to an abyss of failure. The country has had near successes in the past interjected with longer periods of stagnation. Another opportunity has come to right the wrongs and set the country on the path of glory and it starts with you, the PDP delegates.
Nigeria’s problems seem to be numerous but two issues stand out that if gotten right sets the tone for the country to be on the oath of glory: The neglect of the youths and a problem of leadership. Of all the candidates vying to be the candidate of the PDP in 2019 election, only one man has displayed true understanding of managing this problem. He is Governor Aminu Tambuwal.
Tambuwal’s meteoric rise in Nigeria’s politics is not by accident; rather it seems from all indices to be a result of hard work, patience and an altruistic sense of leadership furnished on the mantle of service. Unlike some aspirants who see the highest political position in the country as a sort of compensation for their financial contribution to political parties, Tambuwal based on his antecedent rose from step to step and with each growth, picked up valuable leadership experience that enabled him perform in those given position while also preparing him for more leadership roles. He has performed outstandingly in each position thereby making him the most favourable person to be entrusted with more roles.
The reward for hard work is more work and Tambuwal has shown he is the most deserving of this. After taking him time to learn the ropes under the then Senate leader, Senator Abdullahi Wali, as a personal assistant, Tambuwal proceeded to contest for a position in the House of Representatives to represent his people in 2003. He was returned again 2007 and 2011. Due to his selfless service and leadership quality, he was made Speaker of the House of the Representatives. The House during his leadership has been credited with changing the face of the lower chamber. The local government council became and was recognised by law the proper third tier of government thereby bring the government closer to the people.
When Tambuwal decided to run for governor in his state in 2015, it did not come as a surprise to many when he was bestowed with the leadership responsibility. The rest they say is history.
What is significant about Tambuwal’s leadership position is that his influence that has seemingly made it easy for him to rise is not because of some affluent distribution of money to attract support but an exhibition of his dedicated service to success. If such man is now in a position to stir the ship of this country, what else do PDP delegates want?
When some youth association visited Tambuwal a few months ago, he told them something significant that has stuck to me and further cements his drive better the youths of the country by providing them with opportunities.
He said: “I am concerned about your future. We will do everything humanly possible to make your life better. This is why when I came on board three years ago I made a pledge to the people of Sokoto that I will not encourage area boyism, thuggery or banditry.”
After that he ordered his chief of staff to provide employment for the youths.
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The Nigeria is today is a reflection of what has been done by those that held power in the past. The Nigeria of tomorrow will also be a reflection of the decisions we have made today. If we can get leadership right and provide adequate opportunities for the youths, we will be solving 80 per cent of some of the biggest problems including crime, insecurity and the growth of the middle class.
Remember, PDP delegates, that your decision at the convention determines what happens in the country in the next 10 years. Make your decision knowing that you’re planting tomorrow’s yam or planting tomorrow’s whirlwind.
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