- It’s my time to rise – Tukur’s son
By Lawrence Olaoye
Former Presidential candidate of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and ex Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, yesterday clarified that he was seeking to become the consensus candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as being variously speculated.
Ribadu, who spoke through his political associate, Alhaji Hamidu Mahmud, who was at the party’s headquarters to obtain the Expression of Interest and Nomination Forms for him to contest the October 11th Adamawa bye-election, said he was prepared to slug it out with his co-contestants at the PDP primary for the party’s sole ticket.
Responding to question as to whether Ribadu would not be imposed on the party in Adamawa because he lacks structure within the PDP in the state, his associate said “He doesn’t have to have any structure. He is going to go through primary like any other aspirant. So, for as long as he can meet the rules and regulations of the party in terms of primary election, it is fair enough.”
On whether President Goodluck Jonathan wanted to impose him on the Adamawa PDP, Mahmud said “We are not aware that the President wants Ribadu. It is some PDP chieftains in our state who called on Ribadu to come and contest for the governorship of the state. The issue of President wanting Ribadu does not arise in this case.”
Meanwhile, the heir apparent to Alhaji Bamanga Tukur’s political dynasty, Awwal Tukur, yesterday declared that his time has come to rise to political limelight as he picked the Expression of Interest and Nomination Forms from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s headquarters to contest the October 11th governorship bye-election in Adamawa state.
The former member of the House of Representatives, while responding to insinuations that he intended to rise on the crest of the elder Tukur’s popularity into political limelight, said “There is no doubt, I’m Alhaji Bamanga Tukur’s son; I must be born to somebody. He’s my father, I’ll ride on his back; I won’t ride on anyone else’s back. That is nature; he has born me and there is nothing I can do about it.
“I’ve said it that people should also look at my own history as an individual. No law says because I’m Tukur’s son, I cannot play my politics. Alhaji Bamanga Tukur’s time has come; this is my time. People should not make that mistake and until you tell me that the butcher’s son cannot eat meat, then, me as a politician’s son, I can’t play politics. So, let’s leave that alone, I face the electorates and people should leave my father out of it and face me on my own right.”
Responding to the insinuation that stakeholders from the state may have resolved to make the former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, the consensus candidate of the PDP, Awwal said though consensus is part of the party’s mode of leadership selection, the PDP hierarchy has yet to call a meeting of aspirants where such decision could be taken.
On whether he had stepped down for Ribadu as being variously speculated, the former lawmaker said his coming forward to obtain nomination form to contest the state governorship election on the platform of the PDP had put a lie to the rumour.
Commenting on how he intended to handle insecurity in the state should he get elected, Awwal said he would ensure redistribution of wealth and engage the people in worthwhile ventures.
He however noted the existence pervasive poverty not only in Adamawa state but in the entire North Eastern region. This, according to him, is at the root of terrorism and criminalities ravaging the region.
Similarly, former Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Aliyu Idi Hong, also picked a nomination form to contest the Adamawa bye election.
He equally insisted that the party has yet to declare Ribadu its consensus candidate
insisting that the entrance of the former anti corruption czar is not a threat to his ambition to contest and win the party’s sole ticket for the October 11 governorship election in the state.
According to him, Ribadu, being a former presidential candidate of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), and a major stakeholder of the All Progressive Congress (APC), has seen that his former party has evaporated in Adamawa.
Others eyeing the PDP governorship ticket include former political adviser to President Jonathan, Ahmed Gulak, Acting governor of the state and former Speaker of the Adamawa House of Assembly, Alhaji Umaru Fintiri, former Executive Secretary, Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) Ahmed Modibbo and former Military Administrator of Lagos state, Gen. Buba Marwa.