Tony Anenih, former chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) board of trustees, has called it quits with politics.
Anenih, who is fondly called ‘Mr Fix It’, announced his decision to retire from politics at the launch of his book entitled, ‘My Life and Nigerian Politics’, in Abuja on Saturday.
“I am persuaded that I have no more ambition nor any point to prove in politics. I am, therefore, glad to declare that, from today, I shall be withdrawing from active partisan politics,” he said.
“I shall, however, continue to avail the country of my experience, give suggestions and offer advice, as a statesman.”
He urged Nigerians to support the government of President Muhammadu Buhari in his effort to make Nigeria a better place.
“I must not end this statement of gratitude without acknowledging the fact that our country is going through difficult times. It is a national predicament which we must confront in unity, irrespective of our partisan commitments, whether PDP, APC, AD or Labour,” he said.
“I, therefore, want to urge all Nigerians to persevere and hope for a better tomorrow. We must support and pray that God will give President Muhammadu Buhari the wisdom and vision to steer this country away from recession to prosperity.”
The former minister of works and housing under former President Olusegun Obasanjo is 83 years; he was born on August 4, 1933. He is a trained police officer, and he was once an orderly of Nnamdi Azikiwe, first governor-general of Nigeria.
He had a political career which spanned decades. He was the state chairman of the National Party of Nigeria (NPN) from 1981 to 1983, and he was instrumental in the emergence of Samuel Ogbemudia as civilian governor of then Bendel state.
Anenih was the national chairman of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) from 1992 to 1993 — the platform on which the late MKO Abiola ran for president.
He joined the PDP, where he worked as the deputy national coordinator of Obasanjo’s campaign in the 1999 and 2003 elections, and he earned the moniker ‘Mr Fix It’ for his ability to provide leadership and solve knotty problems.
In May, he was rumoured to have died in a London hospital after he slumped in his home.
When he heard the news of his death, the statesman fired at tale bearers, wishing them what they wished him
“If I am dead, will I be talking to you? I am in London; I am alive and enjoying myself,” he said from London.
“I am not going to issue any press release to debunk the rumour. God will punish them, and I believe that they will die before me.”
Anenih joins Bamanga Tukur, Edwin Clark and other PDP bigwigs who retired from politics after the party lost the 2015 presidential election.