NEDU MARK, Yenagoa
Ahead of the 2016 governorship election in Bayelsa state, renowned politicians and elders under the aegis of Bayelsa People’s Consultative Assembly have described the Governor Henry Seriake Dickson-led Restoration government as a failure and an era of gloom.
But another group, speaking in support of the governor has denounced the anti- Dickson group as sponsored agents and propagandists.
The elders’ group, led by Senator John Brambayefa, in a statement issued in Yenagoa after its inaugural meeting last weekend alleged that the Dickson administration had succeeded in making Bayelsans stagnant rather than enjoy what should enjoy as citizens.
The group said the meeting of the elders was the first step towards achieving their aim of moving over to the All Progressives Congress, APC, noting that “a fourteen member committee has been instituted to work out modalities” for the movement over to the government in power at the center.
He said: “we have decided that the time for change has come and so we have made up our minds to align ourselves with a platform where we can effect that change in the forthcoming governorship election.”
But the Ijaw Renaissance Group pointedly accused the APC of sponsoring the Brambayefa group to discredit the state government and rubbish its achievements.
They claimed that the opposition in the state had recruited a “special squad of experts in false propaganda, blackmail and falsehood to discredit the achievements of Gov. Dickson.”
They warned the APC to stop the politically orchestrated plot in their own interest, “because such falsehood would not have any impact on the re-election bid of the governor, who has performed very well.”
General Secretary, Ijaw Renaissance Group, Dr. Timothy Anibiowei, in a statement, Thursday, in Yenagoa, stressed that, since the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, lost the Presidency in the last general elections, the APC and its supporters had resorted to media attacks and propaganda to run down the state government and its achievements, using phoney platforms which they claim represent leaders and youths of the state.
Dr. Anibiowei stated that while democracy encourages opposition, the resort to blackmail, campaigns of calumny and negative propaganda to score cheap political points would be counter-productive, because the people were now wiser and know the difference between the past and current realities in the state, stressing that such media attacks against the government would not serve any positive purpose.
“The dominance of the PDP in the state remains solid and this was put to test in the recent elections in the state, where the ruling party won overwhelmingly as opposed to the marginal effect of both the APC and APGA.
“The performance of the state government has continued to be a reference point in the voting preference of Bayesians who will prefer the re-election of the incumbent government to any other party in the state,” he said