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Bayelsa Polls: Ijaw leaders to endorse Dickson, seek neutrality from Buhari

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Governor Henry Seriake DicksonA socio-political organisation under the aegis of Ijaw Patriots for Good Governance, have arrangements to mobilize massive support for the re-election of Governor

Seriake Dickson beginning with his formal declaration on September 8.

[Photo: Governor Henry Seriake Dickson]

Members of IPGG include Ijaw leaders in Bayelsa, Delta and Rivers States

A statement issued on Sunday by the spokesperson of the group, Prof. Samuel Belekumo-Adari, after a marathon meeting in Port-Harcourt, said the Ijaw leaders unanimously agreed to throw their full weight behind the re-election of Dickson because of his track record of performance as well as his credentials.

According to him, Dickson remains “the only governor who has succeeded in projecting, propagating and defending the Ijaw national interest within the context of a united and egalitarian Nigeria”.

While  stating that Dickson stands head and shoulder above any of the contestants who have so far indicated interest to contest the 2015 governorship election in the state Belekumo-Adari urged all Bayelsans and the Ijaw people to come out and support him.

He said, “It is an aberration for any true son of Ijaw land to align with the APC at this time. This election is clearly not about Dickson as a person but about us as Ijaw people and what we want the world to think of us. 

“That is why as leaders and respected Ijaw elders drawn from all the states in the Niger Delta, we are appealing to our people to rally round the governor at this time to enable him return as governor for the second time. He has done so well and it is only proper to give him total support to continue the good work he has been doing and even do more to our delight as a people.”

The statement further called on President Muhammadu Buhari to take every step necessary to ensure that the governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa states, which will be the first to be conducted under his watch as president, is conducted in a manner that will strengthen public confidence for his administration and that of democratic process in the nation.

The leaders observed that already “there are glaring infractions going by reports in the media that President Buhari is tacitly giving support to his fellow APC members in Kogi and Bayelsa state.”

They also claimed unconfirmed reports that “the Federal Government is set to deploy federal might to aid his party to win the elections in Kogi and Bayelsa states.”

The Ijaw leaders said, “For instance, we are reliably informed that some elements of the APC in Bayelsa State are dropping the name of President Buhari to intimidate heads of security agencies in the state and INEC officials to do the bidding of the APC in the forthcoming governorship elections. 

“We are calling on the president to look into these allegations urgently. He cannot afford to look the other way or pretend not to know that his name is being dropped to commit atrocities. The least he can do is to ensure that a level playing field is provided for all contestants”.  

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