A former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, has announced his retirement from partisan politics.

He stated this in his address in Abuja on Tuesday at a lecture organised to mark his 80th birthday.

Tukur said he had done his best for the former ruling party and that it was time for him to retire from partisan politics.

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.

“I leave partisan politics for the younger generation. I want to be a statesman and an adviser.

“At the age of 80, I feel I can serve our dear nation more in the capacity of a statesman and father-figure.”

Tukur, nevertheless, 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.

He said Nigeria had given him so much and that “it is now pay-back time.

“I want to re-dedicate my time, life and resources to the service of our nation as an elder statesman and father.”

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.

He also claimed to have introduced internal democracy, party discipline and party supremacy.

These, he said, remained the ingredients of strong party systems which he said ‘’drive the democratic process.’’

According to the former governor of the old Gongola State, which now comprises Adamawa and Taraba states, defections from one political party to the other must be checkmated.