It is no longer news that Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, formerSecretary to the Government of the Federation, President ofthe Nigerian Senate(2000 – 2003), a man on whose shoulders the responsibility of stabilising the 4th Senate as well as shoring up public confidence in the red chamber rested, has formally joined the 2023 race for Aso Rock.
Anyim, who was elected Senate President at the age of 39, is a vigorous problem solver and crisis manager with a decade of experience in social justice activism prior to his election as a Senator. His candidacy is indeed a welcome development andcan be described as the best way to accomplish his mission as a statesman as well as to render service to his people and country.
Speaking at a South-East briefing and consultation session in Enugu recently, Anyim stated “I have been privileged to understand our national problems and appreciate their enormity and peculiarities in the last twenty-one (21) years from my vantage positions in both the legislative and executive arms of government; therefore, I have a clear view of the task ahead as well as the solutions needed to advance the cause of our country.”
Anyim, 61, has remained a loyal member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from inception. His commitment through good and bad times has seen him become a member of the Party’s Board of Trustees (BOT), National Caucus and the National Executive Committee (NEC). He has also served as a member of the PDP’s Reconciliation Committee and had once declared his interest to become the Chairman of the Party. He ran a principled campaign and enjoyed the support and endorsements of party members across the country,however a consensus agreement reached to zone the chairmanship to another geopolitical zone (other than his), prevented him from clinching the party’s top job.
Senator Anyim believes in building strong institutions rather than personal pursuits of power or position. Having inherited a crisis-ridden and factionalized Senate, with the solid support of other Senators, he enhanced the dignity and integrity of the legislature as the bastion of democracy. The Senate, under his watch, was focused, cohesive and productive. By the end of his tenure as President, the Senate was reestablished as a fierce defender of democracy and a catalyst for good governance.
Before this, he had held several executive positions in the Directorate for Social Mobilisation, with extensive experience in drawing up mobilization programmes, strategies and manuals for the Directorate’s operations. From 1989 through to 1992, he served as Social Justice Coordinator, and later,Legal Adviser to the Directorate for Social Mobilisation (MAMSER). From 1992 to 1997, he was Head of Protection Department, National Commission for Refugees. He supervised the refugee eligibility process of the Commission,liaised with local and international organizations on all matters concerning refugees’ human rights, general protection and the creation of awareness on refugee matters in addition to advising the Chief Executive on the implementation of conventions on refugees.
In May 2011, Senator Anyim was appointed Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) by President GoodluckJonathan and became the first non-career civil servant to serve in this capacity. As SGF, he employed his deep experience in managing inter-governmental affairs and wide contacts in the legislative arm to forge a strong working relationship between the Executive and the Legislature which engendered trust and a rancour-free partnership that delivered good governance and effective service delivery by the government. Senator Anyimsuperintended many critical and landmark programmes of the federal government that helped to define the GoodluckJonathan Administration.
His charismatic leadership qualities & experience are a few of many other attributes that make him eminently qualified to become President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, especially at a time as this when Nigerians earnestly seek a succour from the burdens of the present days.
Senator Anyim is at home with ordinary Nigerians whose experiences and daily struggles he easily relates with, being himself, a man of humble beginnings. This consciousness greatly influenced his founding and establishment of the“Chioma Anyim Foundation” in 2008. Through the auspices of the Foundation, Senator Anyim provides funds for various needs ranging from educational needs (scholarship funds) and other needs (philanthropic funds) as ways of rendering assistance to as many people as he can. The funds are also earmarked to support start-ups, housing & health needs and the up-keep of the old and the aged. Since its establishment, the foundation has recorded about 300 beneficiaries per year, from every part of the country.
He has enjoyed grassroots support over the years and the energy of his past campaigns, progressive policies, bills and resolutions(while in the senate) have been broadly embraced. This makes him the candidate with the most advantage; he is not a political outsider and has a country-wide name recognition and dedicated following from his establishedyouth mentorship programme under the auspices of Senator Anyim Pius Anyim Service Library & Museum LTD/GTE. The central objective of the Mentorship Programme is to inspire the youths to break barriers in other to realize their potentials.
His decision to run for the office of President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in 2023 is in order to be part of our collective effort to promote national unity and as well oversee economic prosperity. If successful, Senator Anyim has the capacity to ensure the nation moves in the path of peace, development and progress.
Senator Anyim holds the second highest national honour in Nigeria – Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger(GCON). He is a legal practitioner and received his Bachelor of Law (LL.B) Honours Degree from Imo State University in 1987, was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1989 and thereafter proceeded to the University of Jos where he obtained his Master of Laws (LL.M) in 1996. He is a Christian, has three children and is married to Chioma, who is also a lawyer.