The roles of the Peoples Democratic Party [PDP] in the development of Nigeria’s democracy cannot be overstressed. The PDP was in charge of governance of the country from 1999-2015, when the party lost the Presidential election to the All Progressives Congress [APC] led by President Muhamadu Buhari.
Among the party’s numerous achievements were the writing off or Nigeria’s staggering externanal debts through the Paris Club, and bequeathing of a prosperous economy to the nation, with a stable currency. Since 2015, PDP has been playing the role of an opposition party.
Those who resigned were the Deputy National Financial Secretary, Gerald Irona; Deputy National Organising Secretary, Hassan Yakubu; Deputy National Legal Adviser, Ahmed Liman, and Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Diran Odeyemi.Others are the Deputy National Woman Leader, Hadizat Umoru; Deputy National Auditor, Divine Arong, and another official.
An official who resigned from the Execitive Committee claimed the deputies were fed up with the leadership style of the National Chairman of the party, Uche Secondus.
He said the officials were being marginalised and sidelined by the leadership of the opposition party and that
Mr Secondus was not managing the party in the manner that will lead to victory in 2023. He alleged that the Chairman was just looking for personal gains.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governors’ Forum has in tying to douse the crisis appealed to members and ‘stakeholders’ of the party to remain calm over last Tuesday’s resignation of seven national deputy officers of the party, which has rocked the nation’s former ruling -party.
The forum made the call in a statement issued by its Chairman and Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, in Abuja.
Tambuwal urged all aggrieved members of the party to hold their peace for the party, as efforts were ongoing by members to intervene on the matter. He said the forum received with regrets and sadness the recent rumblings in the PDP.
“We plead with all aggrieved persons and those with the interest of the PDP at heart to keep their gun powder dry.
He said that the PDP, as the only remaining hope of the nation, for good governance must show an example to Nigerians and also take advantage of the current disarray in the APC. The need for the PDP to put its house in order to enable it play its true roles as the opposition party cannot be over stressed. Currently Nigeria is drifting to a one party state even when the APC is failing Nigerians with grinding poverty and general insecurity. With the reversal of fortunes experienced by the party and the resignation of seven members of the party’s Exexutive committee, it is quite clear that Secondus has lost his inspiration as the leader of the party. But that is left for the party hierarchy to decide. Perhaps the nztional convention, which is the supreme organ that can force the Chairman to resign.
The National Chairman may have failed in a number of areas hence the calls by the youths and other stakeholders that he resigned his appointment. Other stakeholders argue that there was no need to ask the Chairman to rwsign since his tenure was due to expire in December, when a national convention would hold to eleft a new national executive. Whatever the positions, we are of the view that the need to make PDP stronger and a more virile party to enable it give voice to the voiceless Nigerians as the Major opposition – party should be upper most in the minds of all patriotic members of the party. The ruling-APC, which is equally going throughits internal crisis should not be allowed to carry on without any checks as that would not help the cause of democracy and good governance.
With this in mind therefore,we urge elders of the party and the various organs to wade into the needless crisis and to ensure sanity returns into the party.
As a major opposition platform, we hold the view that Nigerians need PDP to be strong enough to perform the role required of it in the interest of the nation’s Democracy and good governance.
The divergent interests must understand that the parry is supreme and that no matter how influential and powerful they might be, they remain members of the party and must abide by its constitution. Anything to the contrary is an invitation to anarchy.
Obadiah Mailafia[December 24, 1956-September 19,2021]
His controversial death on September 19, of this illustrious son of Nigeria came as a great shock to the nation. Obadiah Mailafia until his demise over allegations of poor attention from the various hospitals he was taken to was a development economist, international polymath, central banker, statesman ; the 2019 Nigeria Presidential election candidate of African Democratic Congress (ADC), and a columnist with some of the national newspapers.
The Northern Governors Forum[NGF] has described his death as a great loss to the nation as well as the entire Northern region.
In a statement , the Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong said the death of Dr Mailafiya is a sad development not only to his family, but to the nation because of his enormous contributions to the socio-economic pursuits of Nigeria.He said: “The legacies of Dr Mailafiya will continue to be celebrated as he showed passion for development, emancipation, truth, justice and equity in all his interventions at various platforms.”Also, the Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, described the demise of the renowned banker as a great loss. Gov. Ortom said the nation will greatly miss the contributions of Mailafia in the economic and political spheres of Nigeria, particularly at a time the country needs patriots in tackling the myriad of challenges confronting it. No doubt Mailafia will be greatly missed.
Children as Victims of Insurgency
Nigerian children are passing through one of their most trying times in the nation’s history. Hardly does any day passes without reports of these young ones usually referred to as the leaders of tomorrow being kidnapped, raped and even killed by bandits and terrorists in a society that is losing its moral direction.
Dr Ihekweazu’s Appointment at WHO
In the midst of nationwide insecurity, which has made life miserable for many, Nigeria had something to cheer, when one of the nation’s pragmatic administrators got an international job recently.
While Dr Ihekweazu still serves as the head of Nigeria’s infectious disease agency, the letter disclosed that he will assume the new office on November 1, 2021, and will be in charge of WHO’s pandemic and epidemic response hub in Berlin, Germany. The letter stated:“I am pleased to welcome Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu as an Assistant Director-General for Health Emergency Intelligence from November 1, 2021.
“You will lead the work on strengthening pandemic and epidemic intelligence globally, including heading the WHO Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence in Berlin.” Ihekweazu and other members of the new global WHO Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence were inaugurated, recently in Berlin, Germany, by Director-General of WHO, Dr. Ghebreyesus and Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr. Angela Merkel.The WHO DG noted that Dr. Ihekweazu who is currently the Director-General of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control[NCDC] was trained as an infectious disease epidemiologist, and has over 20 years of experience working in senior public health and leadership positions in several national public health institutes, including the South African National Institute for Communicable Diseases, the United Kingdom’s Health Protection Agency, and Germany’s Robert Koch Institute.
He has also led several short-term engagements for WHO, mainly in response to major infectious disease outbreaks around the world.The WHO DG also noted that Dr. Ihekweazu, who was born in Germany, is a graduate of the College of Medicine, University of Nigeria and has a Masters in Public Health from the Heinrich-Heine University, Dusseldorf, Germany.The new appointee is said to have led several short-term engagements for WHO, mainly in response to major infectious disease outbreaks around the world.
In 2003, he was awarded a Fellowship for the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training and subsequently completed his Public Health specialisation in the United Kingdom.He is widely published in medical peer-reviewed journals.Dr Ihekweazu was appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari in August 2016 as the acting head of the NCDC, the agency responsible for the control and prevention of communicable diseases in the country.The Epidemiologist became the first substantive head of the disease agency in November 2018, following the signing of the NCDC Act into law.
As NCDC Director-General, Ihekweazu has led the response to large outbreaks of infectious diseases such as Yellow fever, Lassa fever and monkeypox.Since the coronavirus outbreak in early 2020, Ihekweazu has led Nigeria’s public health response to the pandemic through the NCDC.He has been serving on the WHO’s IHR Emergency Committee for COVID-19, chaired by Didier Houssin.Dr Ihekweazu also serves as a Member of the Africa Task Force for Coronavirus Steering Committee, where he chairs the Infection Prevention Control Sub-Committee.
With his very rich credentials and exposure, there is no doubt that Dr Ihekweazu will succeed in his new assignment. DAILY ASSET which awarded NCDC under his leadership as the Government Agency of the year 2020 in our prestigious Lecture and Award in February in Abuja, has been vindicated for the global recognition, which was made largely possible as a result of the drive and other leadership qualities of the NCDC’s chief executive, Dr Ihekweazu in the last few years, especially in the campaign against COVID-19 pandemic.
We have no doubt that he will succeed in his new post at the WHO having prepared adequately for such important international assignement.
We urge the new Assistant Director General to bring to the front burner the health challenges of African countries especially tjose associated with public health issues.
For instance, the distribution of COVID – 19 vaccines has been a challenge in much of Africa. This is one area, the Nigerian expert can use his good offices to bring to the attention of the global health agency.
His appointment should serve as a source of motivation to other Nigerian professionals, who should note that wherever you are and whatever you do, excellence will have no hiding place and that in due course will be noticed and appreciated.
DAILY ASSET congratulates Dr Ihekweazu for this international recognition and wish him success in his new assignment.
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