By Samuel Oyadongha & Emem Idio
YENAGOA—WITH official results from five of the eight local councils, Governor Seriake Dickson of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, yesterday, emerged as the front runner in the Bayelsa State Governorship election having scored 81,929 votes.
He is closely being pursued by the All Progressives Congress, APC, standard bearer and immediate past governor of the state, Chief Timipre Sylva, who got 56,514 votes.
So far, results from 28 polling units in the five councils were cancelled due to electoral skirmishes, over-voting, malfunctioning card readers and violence.
While Dickson won in four of the five councils, Sylva had the upper hand in the battle for Brass, his local council. The councils that Dickson won were Sagbama, Yenagoa, Ekeremor, Kolokuma/Opokuma.
Official announcement of the results will continues today at 10 am. The remaining councils are Ogbia, Nembe and Southern Ijaw.
This came as the PDP alleged, yesterday, that the APC perpetrated violence in Southern Ijaw area of the state and was plotting to manipulate the outcome of the exercise to its favour.
Dickson wins in Sagbama, Yenagoa, Ekeremor, Kolokuma/Opokuma
In Sagbama Local Council, which has 14 wards and where Governor Dickson hails from, the PDP had the upper hand.
Out of the 35,647 valid votes, the PDP got 28,934, the APC scored 5,382 while the PDM got 406 votes.
According to the Collation Officer, Mr. Perekeme Bertola, a lecturer at the Niger Delta University, NDU, results from six polling units at Asamabiri were cancelled due to alleged malfunctioning card reader and electoral violence.
Total registered voters in the council stands at 84,550; accredited voters are 36,892 and 726 votes were voided
Dickson also won in Yenagoa, the state capital with 24,258 votes while Sylva got 14,563 votes. The PDM polled 451 votes.
However, results from 16 polling units were cancelled due to snatching of election materials, violence and intimidation of electoral personnel, according to the Collation Officer, Mr Victor Torupele, a lecturer at NDU.
Total registered voters in the council is135,025; Valid votes, 40,041; void votes 1710; accredited voters 44,751 and total votes cast 41,751.
For Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Council, the results are: PDP, 7,619; Apc, 6,896 and PDM, 137 as announced by the Returning Officer, Mr Aniekwe James, senior staff of Federal University Otuoke.
Sylva wins Brass
Sylva carried the day in his Local Council, Brass, carting away 21,755 votes compared to Dickson’s 6,516. The PDM had 222 votes.
The Acting chairman of the state PDP, Serena Dokubo-Spiff is also from Brass, which has 10 wards.
According to the Collation Officer, Dr D Tambo, results from six units in ward 1 were cancelled due to alleged electoral skirmishes and over voting.
Total registered voters in the council is 55,923 of which 30,397 voters were accredited. Total valid votes is 28,616 and 592 votes voided.
The ruling PDP won the tough battle for Ekeremor Local Council, which has 12 wards. Ekeremor is the local government area of the Minister of State for Agriculture and Director General of the Sylva/Igiri Campaign Organisation, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri as well as Fred Agbedi, the Director General of the Restoration Campaign Organisation of the PDP candidate.
Breakdown of the votes scored by the political parties, according to the Collation officer, Dr. Johnson Dagana of the Open University of Nigeria, Yenagoa Study Centre are as follows: PDP, 14,602; APC 7,918; ACPN 7; ADC 5; APA 35; APGA 8; CPP 3; DPC 5; DPP 9; NP 4; MPP 1; NNPP 4; PDC 3; PDM 44; PPA 15; and UPP 1.
Total registered voters is 82,783 out of which 24,667 were accredited voters. Total valid votes recorded was 22,664 and 634 votes voided.
Delay is plot to rig — PDP
The PDP, yesterday, protested the delay in releasing the official result of the governorship election in seven out of the eight local councils of Bayelsa State.
The PDP alleged that the APC was planning to upturn its victory at the polls.
This came as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM) Mr. Moses Siasia, said the exercise was fraught with irregularities, especially financial inducement and illegal thumb printing of ballot papers.
Siasia called for the disqualification of parties and candidates allegedly involved in such irregularities.
Also, two commissioners of police, Brigade Commander, Battalion Commander and a Deputy Commander of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), were yesterday deployed to Southern Ijaw Local Council to ensure the safety of lives and property.
State Chairman of the PDP, Chief David Serena Dokubo-Spiff; the National Vice Chairman (South-South), Dr.Cairo Ojougbo and the Senator representing Bayelsa West, Senator Foster Ogola, at a briefing in Yenagoa said the delay in the declaration of results was part of the plot to rig the exercise in favour of the APC.
According to Dokubo-Spiff, investigation by the PDP showed that the processes of planned manipulation had commenced.
He also accused the Resident Electoral Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Mr. Barito Pagih of partisanship.
He declared that the National Working Committee and State Executive Committee of the PDP had resolved to resist any attempt to manipulate the outcome of the poll.
His words: “We have our results and it shows clearly that we have won seven out of the eight local government councils. Instead of staying here in Yenagoa and monitor the election, the APC standard bearer is in Abuja having meetings with some officials of the Federal Government on how to manipulate the poll. Enough is enough. We will no longer tolerate the effrontery of the APC.
“Our party wants to register our concern about the conduct of the election in Southern Ijaw. In spite of the fact that the security of lives have not been adequately taken care of, the INEC went on.
“For emphasis, the orgy of violence, perpetrated by the APC thugs in the full glare of security agents resulted in the loss of lives of Bayelsa people. They shot dead five persons in their desperation for power.
“The majority of the indigenes of Oporoma, headquarters of Southern Ijaw and other communities, are still taking refuge in the forests and swamps as a result of the heavy gunfire.”
He also claimed to have escaped unhurt in the hands of armed thugs during the exercise in Twon Brass, Brass Local Government Area.
Disqualify parties involved in electoral irregularities—Siaisia
On his part, Siasia in a statement by his media aide Mr. Michael Abimboye, said: “No election took place in Bayelsa State. It was political bazaar. INEC should immediately look into this and commence disqualification of political parties involved in the financial inducement and other electoral irregularities.
“I am also using this opportunity to call on the security agencies to do something about it immediately. I don’t believe that with the level of commitment we got from the INEC Chairman, this kind of irregularities took place.
“I saw some government officials with large number of PVCs on election day. What where they doing with such a large number of PVCs? For government officials to have large number of PVCs, then the election cannot stand.
“Security agencies should do their own investigation and bring such persons to book because I believe they contravened the Electoral Act. We must ensure that such kind of people are taught the lessons of their lives.”
Meanwhile, Deputy Inspector General of Police, Hashimu Argugun, at media briefing in Yenagoa, described as untrue the claim that some persons lost their lives in Oporoma.
He said: “The report that some people were killed cannot be confirmed as corpses of the purported dead persons cannot be traced and their particulars could not be obtained from any source.
“Information at my disposal is that there was no death in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area.”