By Gladys Nweke
As the race for the governorship ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) rages, a group seems furious that the state leader of the party, Chief Timipre Sylva, of trying to force an ex-militant as a candidate on the party.
This move the group warned is a sure bet for failure as the aspirant is not only susceptible to blackmail, but may sell out at the last minute given background which is known to everyone, including Chief Sylva who was a former governor of the state.
The group, APC Integrity Initiative (APCII), in a statement signed by its coordinator, Mr. Mene Macjob, also raised the alarm that the action of the state leader may be part of a grand design by the former governor to ensure that the party fails at the November 16 guber election in order to pave way for his emergence as the party’s candidate in 2023 election if the APC fails to produce the governor this time.
If this suspicion is true, the APCII wondered why Chief Sylva should engage in such conspiracy against the party that has nominated him as minister of the federal republic.
According to the statement, not only is his choice not qualified under his militant past during when he had destroyed many oil facilities and equipment including pipelines, he was reputed to have forced the closure and shutdown an oil facility. The facility, a Nigerian Agip Oil Company’s owned multimillion-dollar facility, the Okoron/Tebidaba flow station, produces over 30,000 barrels of oil per day. He destroyed it when he was chairman of his community’s Olugbobiri Youth Association.
The APCII said that AGIP was so frustrated by the ex0militant’s activities as a pipelines vandal that it was forced to award the contract for the protection of the same pipelines to him to stop the vandalism.
Besides, APCII lamented, these activities and antecedents are known to the men of the Nigerian Security Services and that even Governor Seriake Dickson has had cause to accuse AGIP of empowering him to cause crisis. The governor further urged the company to cancel his pipeline surveillance contract because of the notorious activities of his company.
So the APCII wondered why such a notorious person should be allowed to fly the party’s flag during such a crucial election.
The APCII stressed that such aspirant being foisted on the party is a recipe for disaster knowing that he has not got any capacity and capability, both educational and intellectually, to take the party to the next level.
They, therefore, called on the national leadership of the party to call Sylva to order immediately in the interest of the party as his activities are said to be inimical to the success of the party in the state.
… as Sen Brambaifa deplores crowded field in PDP
By David Ejiohuo, PH Airport
Meanwhile, the number of aspirants from the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), had been described as a crowd and a deplorable situation capable of causing bad blood among the aspirants and the party.
A former PDP Senator, John Brambaifa, made the observation during the weekend, while fielding questions from the journalists at the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa.
Senator Brambaifa warned at the occasion that unless the number, which is about 19 now, was properly managed, that it could lead to bad blood among the aspirants and other members of the party and capable of leading to a disadvantaged position for the party in the 2019 guber race in Bayelsa state.
According to the former Senator, there was no way the number could be managed without bruising some aspirants, which he said could lead to the disadvantage of the party.
He insisted that the situation in the Bayelsa State PDP was worrisome and deplorable because at the end, only one person will emerge and that if not properly managed, could boomerang. “Talking about democracy, yes, everyone is entitled to contest in that sense but I pray that at the end of the primary that the party should be able to manage those who did not emerge to allow cohesion.
“Failure or not, the aspirants should put their disadvantage apart and work for the success of the party to win.”
Senator Brambaifa called for restraint among the party men for their quest to contest for public offices to avoid such crowded situations that could end up to the disadvantage of the party.
“To me, the desire of everybody to contest elective offices in the party is a new phenomenon and should be checked for the same interest of democracy and party cohesive,” he added.