2019 Bayelsa Guber: APC planned to attack us if it had won, Ex-Governor Dickson reveals

Posted by News Express | 12 January 2022 | 377 times

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. . . Details of his expedition to Sampou to 'retaliate' Gov. Diri's 'ambush'

Immediate past Governor of Bayelsa State, Senator Seriake Dickson, has disclosed that key figures in his then administration and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) heavy weights in the state would have been hunted down had the party lost the 2019 governorship election.

Dickson, who is the Senator representing Bayelsa West Senatorial District, made the revelation during a grand reception organized in his honour by the people of Sampou when he paid a visit to State Governor, Duoye Diri, who hails from the area.

Dickson had on January 3, 2022, paid a return visit to the Governor who visited the Senator on Christmas eve, a visit Dickson described as “an ambush,” and had sworn to “retaliate.”

The 2019 governorship election had ended on a dramatic note in Bayelsa. The Independent National Electoral Commission had returned the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the poll. But PDP challenged the APC victory and succeeded at the Supreme Court which voided the APC victory and returned PDP to power in the state.

Dickson told the gathering that when the opposition APC first emerged victorious in the Bayelsa governorship contest, that their plan was to “fight us.”

“As Governor Diri is on the seat, I am so happy. Every Ijaw man ought to be happy, the Bayelsa State Peoples Democratic Party should be happy. If not because of God that made it possible for the party to succeed, what would have happened to us?” he asked.

Senator Dickson noted that at the end of his eight-year tenure, Diri succeeded him, saying that “it was expedient to give glory to God because Power belongs to Him alone.”

The Senator who went to Diri’s country home in Sampou, Kolokuma/Opokuma local Government Area of Bayelsa State, with a crowd comprising his Traditional Ruler, top members of the Bayelsa West PDP Elders Caucus, other political associates, business associates and friends, said his visit was in fulfillment of his promise to his successor.

Diri, in company of a retinue of his aides and top government functionaries had on Christmas eve, paid an unscheduled visit to his predecessor at his country home in Toru-Orua.

“I and my entourage have come to celebrate with our dear Governor,” Dickson said, adding: “When dogs play, you will observe that they fall for each other, for the relationship to be cordial.”

Senator Dickson said as part of the yuletide festivities, he came to pay homage and solidarity to the Number One Citizen of the state, as a mark of respect; as well as to reciprocate the earlier gesture of the governor when he visited him at his country home in Toru-Orua community.

He made it clear that Diri was his friend, brother, colleague and ally whose relationship was treasured beyond party affiliation.

While calling on people of the state to support the present administration, Dickson stressed that those in government must work with unity of purpose.

 “This New Year, we are with you again. When things are not okay with you, make it known to the people  and when things are pretty okay with you, still make it clear to the people,” the Senator said.

At Sampou, the Senator and his team walked into a grand reception where the indigenes had come out en masse to pay homage and show gratitude to the “Political Engineer” who worked against all odds to put their son in office.

Governor Diri who mobilized members of his cabinet, House of Assembly Members and members of various Caucuses of the PDP in the State to receive his political ally and mentor, called on those in his government and PDP members to continue to give glory to God for allowing the party to still maintain and control political power in the state.

The Governor also advised his supporters and political associates to ensure that their structure remained intact ahead of the 2023 elections.

Diri described the Ofurumapepe, Senator Henry Seriake Dickson, as his friend, brother, leader, mentor and father, saying that they began their political career serving together in past civilian administrations in the state, except one, adding that that informed why the elders and traditional rulers, Amayanaweis of Toru-Orua, Ebedebiri, Ayamasa honoured the Senator with their presence in Sampou.

The Governor went down memory lane, narrating how his predecessor had always been instrumental to his (Diri’s) political successes and recalled that his first elected position as member of the National Assembly was facilitated by Dickson.

He also narrated how his smooth transition from the House of Reps to the Senate and now Governor of the state was made possible because Dickson believed in his capacity to consolidate on the legacies he (Dickson) has laid for the state. 

“Dickson and I have known each other long before the creation of Bayelsa State (in 1996). We had been involved in the Ijaw struggle in Port Harcourt (Rivers State) and later served in other administrations in the state.

“Like he (Dickson) rightly mentioned, it is only in one administration both of us did not serve in this state. And we never knew he would become governor but because that was his destiny, it came to pass.  

“The kind of relationship we share is cherished by both of us. I recall when we were looking for someone to contest the House of Reps seat for our party. While I was busy looking for the right person outside, he was in his office doing same thing.

“Finally, he decided and told me that those around him have pointed to my direction to represent Yenagoa/ Kolokuma/ Opokuma Federal Constituency. That was how I started the journey to the National Assembly.

“Initially, our intention was for me to go to the Senate. But being the political strategist that he is, he told me that the powers that be then would be an obstacle. So the House of Reps was the best option at that time. 

“I decided to go down this memory lane because a lot of things are happening just to underscore the relationship that I have enjoyed with my brother, friend, compatriot and leader till now that I’m Governor,” Diri said.

The visit which turned out to be a huge carnival with cultural displays from various communities across the state had in attendance the Speaker of the Bayelsa House of Assembly, Abraham Ingobere, legislators, Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Konbowei Benson, members of the state executive council, top government functionaries, traditional rulers as well as party stalwarts and political associates.

•PHOTO: Senator Dickson speaking during the grand reception organised in his honour by the people of Sampou when he paid a visit to State Governor, Duoye Diri . . . Jan. 3, 2022

Source: News Express

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