Mr. Nanven Nimfel was born on the 2nd of February, 1956 in Kadarko, Wase Local Government Area of Plateau state. The young Nanven Nimfel enrolled as a pupil of Local Education Primary School, kadarko in 1963 and finished in 1970. While at primary school, he was made the chairman of the school debating society, and at that young age he learnt to face large audience to state his view. The skills he learnt in the early age, prepared him well for the task and challenges in life.
He proceeded to Government Secondary School now Science School Kuru in 1971 and finished in June, 1975. While in Secondary School, he was the treasurer of the fellowship of Christian students (FCS) and also the captain of the 26th Plateau Company of the Boy’s Brigade. As captain, he led the school boys to the 1974 Independence Day parade in Jos.
Three months after leaving Kuru, the young Nanven Nimfel gained admission into the University of Ibadan, Jos campus in September 1975.
In 1976, the University of Jos was established and the Government initially asked the students of the University of Ibadan in the Jos campus to join the then nascent university of Jos.
The students mostly rejected and protested the directive.
Mr Nanven Nimfel saw the student’s protest as an attempt to scuttle the start of a full flagged University in Jos and therefore led a counter protest. At the end, the then Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Professor T.K Tamuo made the stay in Jos optional. Mr. Nimfel was among the very few people, who stayed back and joined the pioneering students of the University of Jos, in September, 1976.
Mr Nanven Nimfel met his first challenge soon after. The first admission into the University of Jos had 70 percent of the students from the south and all the then six Northern states had only 30 percent of the student’s population. This state of affairs was in contravention of the catchment areas policy of the Federal Government.
The University of Jos then had Plateau and Bauchi States as its Catchment Areas. He, as the President of the Plateau State students of the University of Jos, protested and fought the clear and blatant injustice done to Plateau State students.
The protests was so intense that the Federal Government had to set up a visitation panel led by Chief Richard Akinjide SAN. Mr. Nimfel submitted a 12 page memorandum and testified openly for 90 minutes before the panel. The report of the visitation panel led to the removal of the first vice chancellor of the University of Jos and the subsequent normalization of admission into the University of Jos.
That struggle, endeared him to the students from the North, particularly those from Plateau state while the students and lecturers form the south, loathed and detested him and resolved to frustrate him. Paradoxically, Mr Nanven Nimfel through the exhibition of other leadership qualities and political skills was in 1979 elected as the President of the University of Jos, students Union Government (SUG), he became the first Plateau State indigene to occupy the position.
In 1979 while he was president of the university of Jos Student Union, he single handedly took on the responsibility of reuniting Nigeria students who were splited along North and South axis as a result of the “JAMB must go” crises. Students from the North were opposed to the establishment of JAMB while those from the south supported. Mr. Nanven Nimfel embarked on a shuttle diplomacy of sort that took him to Maiduguri, Kano and Zaria where he succeeded in persuading the Northern students to remain in the united Nigerian student body.
He was also among the Nigerian students who adopted NANS as the new name of the national students’ body after the then Military Government had banned NUUS – the first name of the national student body. The name was adopted at a meeting at the University of Benin.
From 1981-1983, Mr Nimfel worked at the state secretariat of the Nigerian People’s Party (NPP) as the State Director of Research and Planning in 1986, Mr. Namven Nimfel was employed as a Basic Mathematics Instructor at the then school of Preliminary Studies Keffi. He voluntarily resigned this appointment in 1987 in order to contest the Local Government Election for the position of Chairman Wase Local Government Area.
The residency policy introduced by President Babangida later disqualified him but he remained in politics and successfully worked for the success of his political group.
In 1990, in the run down to the third republic, he was appointed as the State Director of organization, Research and Intelligence of the social democratic party SDP. In that capacity, he was charged with registration of Members, ensuring the integrity of registered members’ state wide and organizing primaries for the 1991 Local Government and the Gubernatorial Election.
Because of his organizational skills, hard work and integrity all the assignments were successfully carried out and the SDP was successful in the elections. In 1992 Governor Fidelis Tapgun appointed him as Director General, political and Research Bureau in the Governor’s office. He was the secretary of the National Convention Planning Committee of The Social Democratic Party, which was held in Jos and where Chief MKO Abiola emerged as the candidate of the SDP, in 1993.
In 1994, after the General Abacha intervention, Mr. Nanven Nimfel was appointed as the Personal Assistant to the then Minister of Police Affairs, Chief Solomon Lar. He subsequently joined the Federal Civil Service and served meritoriously in the
Police Affairs Office, 1994–1999.
Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation 1999-2000,
Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs 2009-2010, Ministry of Interior, 2010-2012 and the Federal Ministry of Justices 2012-2016.
In the course of his service, he rose from the position of Chief Administrative Officer to the position of Director of Administration. His Federal Civil Service career is more remarkable not just for the years he spent nor the height he attained, but the lives he touched.
Mr Nanven Nimfel is affectionately remembered for the role he played in the facilitation of the employment of more than 2,000 Plateau indigenes in to the Para Military Services when he was the Director/Secretary of the Civil Defence, Fire service immigration and Prison Service Board (CDFIPB) He retired from the Civil Service in February 2016 on attainment of the statutory age of 60, and was same year appointed as the Special Adviser to Governor Simon Bako Lalong on Political Affairs.
In September 2018, he resigned the position to contest the Southern Plateau Senatorial District on the platform of the APC. In spite of clearly having the support of majority of the delegates, the delegates could not have their way and he lost, few weeks after the Primary’s, Mr Nanven Nimfel was appointed the Senior Legislative Aid to the Deputy Majority Leader of the House of Reps. and later appointed Special Adviser on Political Matter to the Deputy Speaker House of Reps. Honorable Ahmed Idris.
He is a recipient of numerous awards including:
1) Inter-alia Award, 2016.
2) Plateau Most Outstanding Public Servant of the Year, 2017.
3) North-Central Outstanding Political Personality of Year. 2018
4) Plateau Lifetime Achievement Award, 2018.
Support Nanven Nimfel for Plateau State Southern Senatorial District, 2020. A man of Empathy, Vision and Action who has always risen to the challenges of his time in the service of the people.
Courtesy: Plateau Transformation Initiative.