Wednesday 31 August 2022


For a society to develop and make progress, a former Commonwealth Secretary General, Chief Emeka Anyaoku stated that, good and effective leadership is prerequisite incorporated with forward-looking leaders who are committed to uplifting the welfare and well being of their people.

He said, “Good and effective leadership has been shown to be an indispensable requirement for human society to make progress and develop.

“Countries and nations, whose societies have attained appreciable development and advancement, have done so because they have been blessed with forward-looking and progressive leaders committed to uplifting the welfare and wellbeing of their people”.

Nigeria will soon be heading to the polls for general elections in 2023, and it’s very imperative for Plateau State to know the in-depth capacity of their gubernatorial candidates, use the necessary criteria of good leadership to judge them and make the right decision.

Aside Anyaoku’s submission of forward-looking and commitment to the welfare and wellbeing, the upliftment of the governed, disposition of leaders also counts a lot.

Rev Jesse Jackson said, “Leaders must be tough enough to fight, tender enough to cry, human enough to make mistakes, humble enough to admit them, strong enough to absorb the pain, and resilient enough to bounce back and keep moving.”

Other factors include: extraordinary multi-sectorial sagacity of the society, strong mental capacity, strong charismatic finesse and sound experience in the corridor of power.

I am setting my focus on Dr. Patrick Dakum of the Labour Party (LP), in Plateau State.

Does he possess the qualities of leading Plateau?

Dakum, by virtue of the positions he has held and the footprints he left behind, shows the capacity of his exposure and understanding of people at all levels.

He was a two time Commissioner in Plateau State. The Commissioner of Information and Health, under the Chief Joshua Dariye led administration.

Also: he was a Church elder at COCIN Headquarters Compound Church, Jos and the Chief Executive Officer of the Institute of Human Virology, Nigeria (IHVN) and an Associate Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine, Baltimore.

These positions have placed him on the pedestal of local, national and international leadership, which he led and is leading people of different spiritual, ethnic, academic, racial and international background, thus, winding enormous knowledge of blending variables and diversities, to produce productive broth.

Governorship demands the knowledge of the workings of the executive, legislative and the judiciary too!

Dakum has this knowledge, being a member of the State Executive Council of the Chief Joshua Dariye led administration for Six years and Eleven months, where the administration was denied one year one month of completing eight years of its first and second term by virtue of the Six Months State of Emergency and Five Months illegal impeachment.

Under the administration, Dr. Dakum was in the know of the bills raised by the Executive and sent to the Legislature such as: the creation of Plateau State University, Bokkos, creation of new chiefdoms and districts, etc.

He also knows the indepth working relationship between the Executive and the Legislature, which helped and sustained the Dariye Administration for a long time.

A leader must be one who stands by the state and his principal on virtues and not illegalities. A good follower can make a good leader.

Dakum has exhibited absolute loyalty to his principal Dariye while in power, both in good and bad times. He didn’t give in to any juicy promise or inducement to support the kangaroo state of emergency declared on the state on May 18, 2004 and the illegal impeachment.

He faced persecution from then Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), led by Malam Nuhu Ribadu, but remained faithful till the end of their administration, on May 29, 2007.

A leader must listen and abide to productive and progressive wishes of his people. This is a fact! Dr. Dakum, being part of the think tank of the Dariye Administration has exhibited such quality.

It would be recalled that, during the State of Emergency, the then administrator, Major General Chris Alli (Rtd), had set up a Committee comprising representatives of all the tribes on the Plateau to come up with a blueprint on how to establish an enduring peace in the state.

The Committee completed its assignment and came up with their report tagged: “Plateau Resolves.” In the report, the Committee suggested that, Local Government Development areas, new Chiefdoms and new Districts should be created. Likewise, Traditional institutions should be upgraded.

As soon as, Dariye’s administration returned from the State of Emergency, it raised bills on the recommendations and sent them to the House of Assembly, where they were passed into laws.

This nobility is a feature that Dakum has listening ears.

Leadership demands the ability to fight and defend the governed. Dakum has proven his mettle when Dariye was set up and arrested in United Kingdom, UK, when he went for a medical checkup, during the emergency rule.

The Abuja-based politicians, who never wanted Dariye’s return to power, kept feeding the state with propaganda that suited them, but Dr. Dakum, gave them a serious fight in countering their propaganda, played the Maradona with them and kept them setting surveillance at UK and Nigerian’s Airports, without knowing the time that, Chief Dariye went and collected back his leadership mantle, on November 18, 2004.

After the return of their administration, the EFCC was on their neck harassing and arresting Commissioners and members of the House of Assembly leading to stagnation of government activities and nonpayment of salaries of workers, and the illegal impeachment.

Facts are that, instead of being weighed down, Dakum and others remained strong, while encouraging Dariye and they both weathered the storm.

They challenged the illegal impeachment in Court and won.

The Holy Scripture says, “If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small.” Proverbs 26:10.

Dakum did not faint in the days of their adversities. Thus; showing he is always very strong in the face of adversities and nothing weighs him down. His stay in government has exposed him to the problems of Plateau State.

An axiom holds that, a problem know, is a problem half solved.

Dakum’s ability and strong will to weather every storm against the then Dariye’s Administration has proven him a gallant soldier, and the inability of the then Federal Government and Abuja-based politicians, to cajole him into compromise has proven that, Dakum is not a sell out or traitor.

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