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Waziri on the verge of history?

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As the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chapters in the 36 States of the federation are busy electing their executives from wards to the state levels in preparation for the National Convention, the National Chairmanship aspirants have intensified their campaigns building contacts and holding consultations across the country. Umar Mohammed looks at the profile of one of the aspirants, Ambassador Adamu Idris Waziri, in this piece.

The National Congress of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) slated to hold on 24th,  March, 2012 is getting hotter by the day. As expected, more aspirants are declaring their interests to contest the party's National Chairmanship position at the forth-coming National Convention. Already, Abuja the venue of the Convention is awash with posters, billboards and handbills of the contestants.

The North East where the chairmanship of the Party was Zoned has between one to three aspirants from each state of the zone. But how many of these contenders are actually set, serious and weighty enough to spring surprises going by their popularity and political structures? The PDP as a ruling party deserves to have a leader whose background and personality has not only been tested, but also proven to be trustworthy. One of such contender of the Chairmanship position is Ambassador Adamu  Idris Waziri, a career civil servant.

Waziri was born in Ibi Local Government of Taraba State, on 12 October 1952. He began his formal education in his native Ibi Primary School in 1957 and in 1961 moved to Wukari Senior Primary School. He was at the Wukari Divisional Combined Secondary School (now Mbiya Government Secondary School, Takum Taraba State. The young Waziri, rather than despair took the suffocating and challenging childhood experience which ordinary should have subdued him as a tonic that propelled him to greater heights.

In 1973, the young Waziri became a teacher in Wukari East Primary School. His desire for self actualization and thirst for higher education saw him gaining admission into the famous Ahmadu Bello University Zaria in 1974 where he graduated in 1977 with a Bachelor of Science Degree B.sc in political science. He served the mandatory one-year National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) programmed in Oyo State between 1977 and 1978.
Not yet satisfied with his academic attainment, Waziri in 1992 travelled to England in search of golden fleece. Between 1982 and 1983, he attended University of Manchester where he receives an Advance Diploma in Development Administration and passed with Distinction. He also bagged Masters of Arts, MA (Econs) Degree in Development Studies in 1984 from the same institution.

On his return to Nigeria Waziri, between 1984 and 2011 held the following position; Director (Administration Finance and Supply) office of the Secretary to the state Government, Taraba State 1991, Director General, (Permanent Secretary) Special Duties Government House Taraba State-1992. He was elected delegate (Member) to the National Constitutional Conference, representing Ibi/Wukari Constituency-1994-1995. He was a member PDP National Finance Committee -1998, Elected Deputy Governor in the Jolly Nyame/Idris Waziri ticket but was denied the position in February 1999.

Waziri was elected Vice-Chairman World Trade Organization (Hong Kong Ministerial) in 2005. He was equally the leader of a high-powered Ministerial Delegation to china-in 2005.

As one of the founding members of the PDP, and a grassroots politician, Waziri has served in many capacites among which are: the  Sole administrator of his native Ibi Local Government Area in 1981; former Finance and Industries Commissioner in Taraba State 1993; he was appointed Nigerian High Commissioner to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan with concurrent accreditation to the Republic of Maldives and Afghanistan in November 1999.

The Ibi born politician was appointed Minister of Commerce in 2003 during Obasanjo administration. He was the gubernotorial aspirant under the Platform of PDP 1998-1999. Waziri is said to have an untainted carrier in both the public and private sectors. He is a man of integrity and has accumulated an incredible wealth of experience in the line of duty which spanned several years, covering local, state, national and international services. Through these years, he has retained an impeccable integrity, honesty and sense of purpose. He has indeed left remarkable imprint in the course of selfless service to his nation and humanity.

Waziri who will attain the age of 60 by October this year is being admired by many because of his simplicity and honesty. He is said to be the favorite of leaders of the party and has recently been enjoying supports from the six geo political zones of the country; recent being from the South-South where some stakeholders from the zone are rooting for his candidacy at the forthcoming National Convention of the party.
Waziri is also a community leader; a patriotic Nigerian with tremendous national and international exposure having schooled and worked home and abroad. He has travelled to over 30 Countries of the world. He is happily married and is blessed with children

In appreciation of his selfless service to humanity, he has received many letters of commendation and awards which include Noble International Award by West African, Nobles Forum in recognition of his status as an eminent West African who upholds the virtues of honesty, integrity and accountability, (9th September 2004); Award of Good Governance presented by the Korean American Business Association, (June 2004). In 2006, he was awarded the best Minister of the year by the Abuja chamber of the Nigerian Union of Journalist (NUJ). He had earlier in 2002 received the award of the best Ambassador of the year and from American Biographic Institute, amongst others.

Ambassador Waziri while serving as an Ambassador in Pakistan was able to use his diplomatic skills to save the lives of five Nigerians, including a woman and a Gambian, who were condemned to death for drug trafficking by the Pakistani authorities.

On the local scene, he was in the fore-front for the creation of his Local Government Area, Ibi, and also in the fore-front for the creation of his State Taraba. In fact, he was said to be the one who wrote the historic memorandum that led to the creation of the State.

From all indications, Waziri is poised to make resounding impact during the election. This is because of his enormous political structures throughout the country and he seems to enjoy wider supports from the six geo political zones. While other candidates are said to be paperweights, Waziri has been making serious impression in the minds of the delegates who are determined to bring change to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.

As a bridge builder between the old generation and the present day politician, Waziri, according to political observers, may have an edge over the other contenders.  In one of his interviews, he was quoted as saying that if elected, he is poised to be a servant leader who will use his wealth of experience to help President Goodluck Jonathan to achieve his Transformation Agenda.

But, as the PDP delegates prepare their minds to cast their votes at the National Congress, it is important to note that they should look out for a leader that will promote internal democracy within the party and cement the unity of the country. Political commentators counseled that they should look out for detribalized Nigerian, an individual that would not mar the harmonious coexistence of the people of the country.

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