Supreme Court Verdict: Gov Diri, Sylva trade words over Balyesa violence  

Posted by News Express | 16 March 2020 | 822 times

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Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State and the minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, yesterday traded accusations over the February 13, 2020 violence and destruction that trailed the Supreme Court verdict which aborted the inauguration of the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief David Lyon.

While Diri blamed the embattled national chairman of the the APC, Adams Oshohmole and Sylva for the protests, Sylva who mocked the governor as being a replica of his predecessor in chasing shadows, said  that the allegation was absurd and preposterous.

Diri, after an inspection of the houses and properties destroyed by suspected APC youths, including the home of the former governor, Hon. Seriake Dickson, blamed the statement credited to ton February 13 after the judgement that there would be no government in Bayelsa State on February 14 and Sylva’s statement that the governor of Bayelsa State from February 14 is ‘illegitimate’ for the violence. He said that it triggered the riotous protests that led to  destruction of properties worth millions of naira.

According to Diri, “l am tempted not to believe that these people are Nigerians not to talk of being Bayelsans.You know it is very easy to destroy and if these are supporters of the APC, what the national chairman of the APC said in Abuja after the Supreme Court which is the highest court in the land has given a ruling, and challenged the ruling of the supreme court that there will be no governor in Bayelsa State, that ignited the riot in the state.

“In Imo State when the Supreme Court delivered a judgement, there were protests, not one or two or three days, they were very peaceful. Not one property was destroyed. However, in Bayelsa State it is a different ball game. The APC in the state has always been associated with violence, destruction of lives and property.

“You can recall that two days before the governoship election, l went to Nembe for campaign and we were attacked. We lost about twenty of our members.Here on the 13th of February after the apex court had delivered ruling, you now saw this level of brigandage, barbarism and primitivity visited on their own properties. Radio Bayelsa is their own property.

“As if what the national leader of the APC said on the 13th of February was not enough, after I had been sworn-in, the minister for Petroleum, after initially calling for calm which was suspicious to some of us, truly being what he was, he came out smoking by declaring that the governor of Bayelsa State is illegitimate.”

But Sylva expressed amusement at public statements credited to Diri trying to connect acts of post-election violence in the state to him.

Sylva, in a statement issued by his Special Assistant on Media and Public Affairs, Julius Bokoru, said the claims are as absurd and preposterous as they are wrong. He said, “ It is important to note that Sylva, being the statesman and advocate of peace that he has always been, called for calm from all parties both on national TV and papers.” (Leadership)

Source: News Express

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