A former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, on Tuesday, announced his retirement from partisan politics.
He made the announcement at a lecture, organised to mark his 80th birthday in Abuja.
In his address, Tukur who said he had done his best for the former ruling party and that it was time for him to retire from partisan politics, advised political parties to maintain internal democracy in running their affairs.
He said, “I deem it fit to use this opportunity of my 80th birthday celebration to announce my retirement from partisan politics.
“It is time to say goodbye to formal politics. I have used several political platforms to serve my country.
Tukur, however said his doors would remain open to all politicians, business men, business women and Nigerians who might seek his advice or opinion on any issue affecting the country and beyond.
“I leave partisan politics for the younger generation. I want to be a statesman and an adviser. I want to re-dedicate my time, life and resources to the service of our nation as an elder statesman and father.”
“At the age of 80, I feel I can serve our dear nation more in the capacity of a statesman and father-figure.”
He said Nigeria had given him so much and that “it is now pay-back time.
“Tukur said that during his short-lived tenure as the chairman of the party, he tried to make sanity to prevail in the party’s affairs.
In their response, the PDP described Tukur as “a quintessential democrat and humble statesman, who had contributed immensely to the development and stability of the nation”.
The party said it remained proud that he had made indelible marks in business and politics within and outside the country.
Mr Tukur was elected as the national chairman of the PDP in March 2012, but resigned under pressure in January 2014.