Group alleges plot to rig Bayelsa guber poll

The Bayelsa Political Watch has alleged plot to rig the November 11 gubernatorial election in the state.

In a statement, yesterday, it challenged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies to be on the alert and shun any inducement to be complicit in the “odious plot” designed to sabotage the election in the state.

The group also called on the security chiefs in the country to prevent further violence in Nembe Bassambiri, Nembe Local Government Area.

Its coordinator, Nadione Harrison, who signed the statement also called on the state government to collaborate with security agencies irrespective of political differences to protect lives and property on election day.

It urged candidates in the November 11 polls to ensure innocent Bayelsa citizens are not murdered because of the desperation for political power.

Nadione noted that emphasis must be placed on the sanctity of the lives and property of Bayelsans at all times including the day of the governorship poll.

He stated that the group finds it pertinent to raise the alarm in view of the increasing possibility of repeated violence in Nembe Bassabiri as shown by the political violence and killings in the area on August 12.

He recalled that over 22 people were killed during the pre-Election Day violence in the same Opu Nembe (Bassambiri) in 2019.

Nadione said that more worrisome was the fact that those who carried out the violence that led to the mindless killings and incapacitation of innocent Bayelans have not been brought to book.

He urged those who desire to win elections to appeal to voters through intensified political campaigns and not through the deployment of arms and ammunition and the slaughter of innocent people as orchestrated in Opu Nembe.

He said that every reasonable parent would be concerned about deployment of innocent Corpers to areas with records of violence without reassurance from the security agencies and INEC.

The group commended the decision of the State Government to halt further aggravation of the political violence in the area by banning the activities of the Council of Chiefs and Youths’ Council in Opu-Nembe on September 2.

The group said that the decision which was taken to restore public peace and order in Opu-Nembe indicated clearly that the government placed emphasis on the protection of lives and properties.

“As the governorship election in Bayelsa draws closer, we find it necessary to call on the security agencies and the Independent national election commission to focus special attention on violence prone areas in the state.

“The recent politically related killings in Opu Nembe on August 12, a few months to the election makes it necessary for the appropriate agencies to take proactive measures to prevent further loss of lives.

“This state cannot forget in a hurry the mindless slaughter of 22 persons in the last gubernatorial election in the state. We are of the view that such heinous crimes committed under the cover of politics can be prevented.

“We commend the state Governor, Senator Douye Diri, for the proactive step of of banning activities of Council of Chiefs and Youths’ Council in the volatile area.

“It is important to note that no parent would readily allow his ward to be deployed as corp members to carry out election duties in areas where desperate politicians can cut short their lives.”


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