Since the return to civil rule in 1999 the PDP has been the dominant party in the predominantly riverine state. It was the contention of analysts that if the 1999 election had held simultaneously  in the state like the rest of the country, the APP candidate, Chief Francis Doukpola would have won the poll given the latter’s popularity. But the Kaiama declaration and its attendant youth restiveness led to the postponement of election, a development that worked in favour of the PDP.

When the election was eventually conducted the PDP had captured the centre and the other South South states, and for a young state starting from the scratch, it was reliably gathered that the elders and elite resolved that it was in the best interest of the state to align with the centre, a development said to have swung the pendulum in favour of the PDP candidate, late Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha who had picked the then unknown Dr. Jonathan as his running mate.

Jonathan and Alamieyeseigha
Jonathan and Alamieyeseigha

Since then the state had been a PDP fortress as winning the party primary is as good as clinching the poll.

In 2003, Alamieyeseigha of the PDP again triumphed at the governorship after surviving the Timi Alaibe scare at the party primary. He however did not complete his tenure as he was  impeached in a controversial circumstance by the state house of assembly over alleged gross misconduct.

It was yet another bandwagon effect in the 2007 when Sylva accidentally got the party ticket having emerged a distant second at the party primary with a paltry 34 votes and went on to win the governorship poll following the elevation of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan who had earlier won the ticket as Vice Presidential candidate of the party.

However Sylva’s ambition of seeking re-election in 2012 despite winning the party primary earlier conducted was truncated following a complex power play allegedly orchestrated by former President Jonathan.

Dickson, with the backing of the former President won the party ticket and coasted home to victory at the poll.

Sylva: APC leader and Dickson: Bayelsa State governor
Sylva and Dickson

The scenario is however different this time as the PDP is for first time is facing a formidable challenge from the opposition party at home which incidentally controls the centre, a twist of fate that has bolster Sylva’s confidence and that of his supporters that there is a silver   lining in the sky for their party.

Alamieyeseigha (1999 to 2005) as the first civilian governor of the state though had his own short comings, he laid the foundation of modern Bayelsa which his predecessors have built upon. Most of the projects in Yenagoa, the state capital like the dualisation of the Mbiama-Yenagoa road, the 500 bed hospital, reclamation of the vast stretch of land now hosting the Peace Park, the Judiciary complex among others were done by his administration.

Goodluck Jonathan (2005 to 2007) held sway for eighteen months as governor following the impeachment of Alamieyeseigha. He built on most of the projects started by his erstwhile boss and also initiated his own projects before he was elevated as Vice Presidential candidate thereby paving the way for Timipre Sylva.

Timipre Sylva(2007 to 2012)

Sylva continued with some of the projects inherited like the Tower Hotel which he took from the first floor to the 18th  floor, he also completed the Isaac Boro Park, which inherited, the Koki Diette Memorial Hospital and several internal roads among others. But the sore point of administration was the excess of the state owned security outfit Operation Famou Tangbe accused of alleged extra judicial killings.

Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.