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Bayelsa PDP, APC bicker over guber poll as group sensitises police

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Ahead of the November 16,2019 gubernatorial election in Bayelsa, the state chapters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) have further dug deeper in the trenches, as the pair yesterday alleged plots to compromise the exercise.

While the state PDP chairman, Moses Cleopas, claimed that its rival was allegedly planning to rig the poll through the military, the APC Publicity Secretary, Doifie Buokoribo, accused the ruling party of “trying to foster panic in the state to prepare the ground for a government-sponsored violence ahead of the governorship election.”

In a statement in Yenagoa, Cleopas had claimed that the information at his disposal backed his fears.

But Doifie, who doubles as the secretary, Media and Publicity Committee of the APC Governorship Campaign Council, dismissed the allegation, accusing Governor Seriake Dickson and his party of “engaging in “a dress rehearsal for their own usual electoral violence and poll robbery.”

However, a non-governmental organisation, Stakeholder Democracy Network (SDN), has sensitised the police force on a peaceful poll.

During a workshop at the Ogbia Divisional Command in Ogbia council area of the state, the NGO’s Project Officer, Joseph Ekong, said it was important to educate participating cops on need for a violence-free election.

He also underscored the importance of enlightening other critical stakeholders like the media, civil society groups, traditional rulers and others on playing by the rules.

Speaking on the topic, “Roles and responsibilities of security agents in elections”, ASP Alex Tinubu observed that the sensitisation of the force on its election duties was in order.

In his remarks, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) representative, Robinson Kuro, reminded the police that vote buying remained an offence, and should therefore advise the poll managers’ legal team on prosecution of offenders.


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