By Tom Garba
Once the name ‘Dr Umar Duhu’ is mention in the leadership circle, it rings bell as a household name in the political firmament of Adamawa State and the country, because of his staunch political ideology and believe in the rule of law, fairness and justice.
In the Northern part of Nigeria if you talk of the only politician who has been in opposition until 2015 elections when he won with overwhelming support, President Muhammadu Buhari will be mentioned. Permit me to still say the only politician that took after Buhari is Dr Umar Duhu who has been a politician with the spirit of opposition to checkmate the then ruling party (PDP) in the defunct ANPP now to APC.
He remained an erudite politician to the extent that he was crowned the Pioneer National Vice Chairman (North East) of APC, and he took the party to the people of Adamawa State, and engineered the process of bringing into the APC, the former Governor of the state, Murtala Nyako. In turn, Nyako pulled out five strong PDP members to the APC. These efforts have earned the APC the ruling party status in Nigeria and Adamawa State.
To cap it all, Duhu was instrumental, as the national vice chairman, to ensure that, for the first time in history, the APC produced a woman State party chairman in his home State.
Duhu despite all odds fought against injustice, impunity and other vices condone in the then ruling party PDP. He is seen as an emancipator of true democracy whose political entrepreneurship earned him the sobriquet, “Young Duhu the political gladiator of working things around for the benefit of the common people”.
Knowing the general fact that APC is a party of change, people got emotionally attached to the change mantra of APC, believing it to be the saving grace of all Nigerians and the gospel of change was richly preached by Duhu in Adamawa state through his political prowess.
This good leadership qualities of the vibrant Umar moved people to massively vote for change because they truly want to see things changing for good. All because Duhu in particular and his fellow compatriots championed the change mantra.
Young people who know Umar Duhu long ago anticipated that the Buhuri administration would have incorporated the likes of Duhu in his cabinet, as there is much wisdom for even Adamawa state to work closely with this political genius whose brain works round the clock in the best interest of the masses and the development of the state and the nation at large, irrespective of all forms of differences.
Is painful to most of us to continue to see Duhu who worked tirelessly for the ruling party to victory, still hanging around without being accommodated in government to make more contribution. It goes to say that the hard working Duru has become the sacrificial lamb of APC in Adamawa.
APC sacrificed Umar as the innocent lamb yet he uttered no single word? He has not given up on helping many Nigerians who look up to him as a man with large heart to help them. Even when he lost the election amongst the many contesters he had helped and supported to be what they were politically before their ascension to the National Assembly, he has to terminate his pursuit of the APC mandate at Appeal Court, without support from the APC stalwarts across board.
Still pained, the story of Umar Duhu is similarly with that of Murtala Nyako who was used and dumped by the ruling APC. It is actually a thing of concern and a call on the APC as a party to keenly look at the cases of this great Nigerians and ensure that they are not only a part of the present administration, but are further honoured nationally.
One thing I like in this great man of enormous leadership qualities is his humility and kind tenderness. Since losing the election, Duhu has never made any bad remarks nor criticize the Adamawa State government or President Buhari.
He has been preaching peace to the people and always pray for President Buhari’s success leading Nigeria. To Duhu, prayers will make or mar our leaders, so positive prayers is what he solicits as the panacea that will make our leaders stand tall and strong to lead us well.
Is APC blindfolded not to have noticed its great men around the party in states? No it can’t be so, but it must be noted that the change APC sings as a slogan will not takes us to the promise land if those who genuinely sacrificed for it are still not even identified, talk less of being recognized by the party.
Or is the APC becoming PDP, turning its back and dumping good people who have given their all and have good intention to help in rebuild the country?
If not, why is a man like Umar Duhu not recognised? I have not seen any wisdom in the APC in Adamawa state, at least for the sake of courtesy, Duhu should have not only been a part of the Adamawa State Government, but would have been in the lead in resolving the problems of APC in Adamawa.
Judging from his pedigree and the role he played for the party in Adamawa, the North East and the country at large, Umar deserves more than a courtesy.
Umar Duhu is a tree with full sweet fruits. A good general will be fast to notice him as a great lieutenant that can cover his back.
Tom Garba, a freelance journalist wrote in from Yola, Adamawa State