Bayelsa Polls: Dame Jonathan, ex-President’s Men Dump Dickson
…As Sylva meets Ateke Tom in Port Harcourt
Barely, one week to the rescheduled election in Southern Ijaw Local Government, wife of the immediate past president, Dame Patience Jonathan and his political associates have moved to stop the re-election of Governor Seriake Dickson by mobilizing support and resources for Chief Timipre Sylva, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the January 9 rescheduled polls in Southern Ijaw and 101 polling units in parts of the state.
INEC had on December 5 last year, conducted elections in seven out of eight local government areas, out of which the governor and candidate of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) overwhelmingly won six LGAs while Chief Timipre Sylva won only one LGA.
Both the PDP and APC have shifted the battle to Southern Ijaw. Though Dickson is leading with over 33,000 votes, the APC is bent on upturning the governor’s victory.
Aside the former first lady, key political associates of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan have renewed their resolve to gang up against Dickson on January 9.
It was reliably gathered that while some of Jonathan’s men had defected to the APC to fight Dickson, many of them remained in the PDP ostensibly to work for the election of the APC candidate, Timipre Sylva.
Prominent amongst those who defected include Senator Clever Ikisikpo (Bayelsa East), immediate past senator representing the former president, Chief Ikiogha Diekivie, former Chief of Staff Government House and close ally of the president from Yenagoa, former Commissioner of Lands and confidant of Jonathan, Surveyor Furoebi Akene.
Others are former Commissioner under Jonathan as governor of Bayelsa and current FERMA Executive Director, Finance, Bishop Deggi Eremienyo. The FERMA Chief defected to APC just eight days to the December 5 election and worked against Dickson in Nembe as well as former Chairman of NDDC and bossom friend of Jonathan, Dr. Tarilla Tabepah who hails from Kolokuma/Okpokuma, Jonathan’s Man Friday, Hon Ayobegha James, Chief Numoipre Wills a Nembe High Chief who was appointed Executive Secretary, National Boundaries Commission by Jonathan but openly mobilized for APC.
Chief among the former President’s men believed to have stayed in the party to battle Dickson are Senator Emmanue Paulker representing Bayelsa Central, the State Action Committee on Aids (SACA) BOSS, Dr. Temple Iluma, Deacon Ndutimi Komomibo, former permanent secretary and member of Ogbia brotherhood, King Collins Danie Ebi and former SA Domestic to the former president, Dr. Waripamowei Dudafa who hails from Kolokuma Okpokuma.
National Daily learnt that Dudafa had never hidden his dislike for the governor but lost his ward and council to the governor in the December 5, 2015 election. He is followed closely by former Transport Commissioner and confidant of Mrs. Patience Jonathan, Mrs Marie Ebikake and the Ogbia born musketeers and multi-billionaires- Dr. Godless Eruani, Barr. Robert Azibola and Barr.George Turner.