THE new national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, assumed office yesterday giving an insight into the policy direction of the ruling political grouping, saying the party would run the polity while President Goodluck Jonathan runs the economy.
Speaking at the PDP national secretariat after receiving the handing-over note from Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje, the former Acting National Chairman, Tukur promised to ensure that Jonathan was not distracted by partisan politics so that he could focus on the economy.
“We have come to help the President focus more on the economy than on partisan politics. We have come to transform and build a great party, not to play politics. We have come to help politicians play a decent politics, politics based on fairness and level playing field. We have come to be those neutral referees the PDP needs right now.
“We have come to ensure that both Executive and the Legislature are on the same page – which is, to make Nigeria great economically, socially and politically. My support staff and my team will never use this office as a platform for launching political careers. They are here to work, work and work in turning PDP into a great party and helping government turn the economy around’,’ he said.
He reiterated that as a foundation member of the party and one of the founding blocks, he would return PDP to the path of justice and equity.
Earlier, Baraje said one of the achievements of the outgoing National Working Committee (NWC) was devolution of powers to the zonal chapters of the party. He assured that the former NWC members would still make their services available to the party.
“We don’t say things we don’t do in PDP. Mr. chairman, accept our little contributions to the development of the party and continue from there.”
Present at the ceremony were two former National Chairmen of the party, Senators Ahmadu Ali and Barnabas Gemade, former Senate President Ken Nnamani, former Board of Trustees Chairman, Chief Tony Anenih, former Deputy Senate President, Ibrahim Mantu, new and former NWC members.
Tukur was elected national chairman of the party last Saturday after other aspirants for the position had announced their withdrawal.