• Gov calls for probe
  • Poll postponed in Southern Ijaw LG

bayelsa-electionIn spite of the huge deployment
of military and other security
operatives, the governorship
election in Bayelsa state was
yesterday characterized by violence
as five persons were feared killed
while faulty Permanent Voters
Cards, PVC, readers marred the
conduct of the polls.
According to Situation room
report, about five persons were
allegedly killed in Southern Ijaw
area of Bayelsa state where the
election was shifted following the
spate of violence in the area.
The Independent National
Electoral Commission, INEC, and
the police confirmed that election
in some places in Southern Ijaw
Local Government Area has been
postponed due to the late take off
of the exercise in the area.
INEC Director of Voters
Education and Publicity,
Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi and Police
Commissioner, Operations,
David Folawiyo, confirmed the
postponement while speaking on
a programme, monitored on the
Nigeria Television Authority.
Mr. Folawiyo said, “We got
word from Bayelsa that polling
officials and electoral officials have
met and have taken decision to
continue tomorrow in such places
where there was violence so that
they don’t go far into the night or
enter in the night. The decision
was taken by electoral official not
the police.”
The new date for the election in
the area will be announced later.
Series of violence had erupted in
the state since Friday night, when
gunshots were repeatedly heard in
several parts of the state, including
Brass local government area of the
There were speculations that
a former Secretary to the State
Government, SSG, Bayelsa State,
Chief Gideon Ekeowei, Mr Donald
Egberibein and 49 others have
been arrested in connection with
the violence.
Donald Egberibein is a
former member of the House
of Representatives while Chief
Ekeowei is a chieftain of the APC
in the state.
Also on Friday, the Special
Adviser to the Bayelsa State
Governor on Inter-Party Matters,
Austin Adigio and three other
members of the Peoples Democratic
Party, PDP, in Okpoama and
Eweama communities of Brass
Local Government area of the State
were macheted in a bloody attack
ahead of the election.
Adigio, who served as Personal
Assistant to Chief Timipre
Sylva and recently decamped
to join Hon. Seriake Dickson’s
administration, was attacked by
several armed youths alleged to
be members of the All Progressives
Congress, APC.
Confirming the development,
the Director of Media and Publicity
of the Restoration Campaign
Organisation of the, Peoples
Democratic Party, PDP, Hon
Jonathan Obuebite, told newsmen
that the attack in Okpoama and
Eweama was one among the series
of attacks unleashed by the APC
against the members of the PDP
across the state.
“If the APC-led Federal
Government fails to put a stop
to this wanton display of federal
might and sheer brigandage and
violence being unleashed on us by
APC in Bayelsa State, we will be
forced to defend ourselves.
“The Federal Government
should be alive to the responsibility
of ensuring that nobody, no matter
how highly placed should take
laws into their hands.”
The commissioner for
Information in the state, Esuene
Kikile, had told journalists
that armed thugs attacked
PDP leaders and supporters in
Okpoma community in Brass local
government areas.
“Some have machete cuts. One
is in hospital, we cannot ascertain
his condition yet,” Mr. Kikile said.
The Publicity Secretary of APC
in Bayelsa, Nathan Egba, also
said that gunmen attacked APC
governorship candidate, Timipre
Sylva and three journalists,
including a correspondent of one
of the national newspapers on
Friday night in Odioma, Brass
local government area.
Egba however denied the
alleged APC’s involvement in the
reported attack on PDP supporters
in Okpoma community, Brass local
government area.
“It had nothing to do with APC,
I can tell you,” he said.
INEC staff held hostage
Independent National Electoral
Commission said yesterday that
its staff deployed to distribute
electoral materials at Sagbama
local government area of Bayelsa
State were being held hostage.
Sagbama is the home local
government of incumbent
Governor Seriake Dickson
and candidate of the Peoples
Democratic Party in today’s
governorship election.
Speaking on a live programme
on the Nigerian Television
Authority, INEC’s Director of Voter
Education and Publicity, Oluwole
Osaze-Uzzi, said staff deployed to
convey materials to Sagbama were
confronted by some gunmen.
Mr. Osaze-Uzzi said the staff
had to take refuge at the local
government headquarters.
He said another team was held
hostage Saturday morning as
they made to distribute materials,
adding that security agents had
been contacted to help rescue the
electoral officials.
But the Deputy Inspector-
General of Police overseeing the
election, Argungu Hashimu, said the police was on top of the
“We are taking care of
everything,” said Mr. Hashimu,
who is also a guest on the NTA
programme. “We are the ones
on ground and we are doing our
job.”Bottom of Form
Gov. Dickson laments faulty card
readers, seeks probe of election
Governor Seriake Dickson,
yesterday expressed dissatisfaction
with the malfunctioning of card
reader machines, which he said
resulted in unnecessary waste of
time and long queues at polling
He also demanded investigation
into the outbreak of violence in
some parts of the state, including
Oporoama, headquarters of the
Southern Ijaw Local Government
Area where at least one person was
Dickson accused the rival
All Progressives Congress of
instigating the violence.
“I and my party have said time
and times again while campaigning
that the other side was preparing
not for an election but for war,” he
“Everyone knows who they are;
the security agencies know who
they are. The security agencies are
right there when these things are
going on. We went to commend
Bayelsans for their determination
to come out to vote.”
PDP in early lead
Results trickling in from the
various polling units indicated
that the Peoples Democratic
Party has taken an early lead at
the governorship elections in
Bayelsa State. The state has been a
stronghold of the party since 1999
and has produced all the governors
since then
Results from Sagbama,
Kolokuma Okpokuma, Nembe
and Ogbia show the PDP
candidate, Hon. Seriaki Dickson

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