We expect peaceful Bayelsa guber poll, says US Envoy
Let people’s will prevail, Diri pleads
United States (US) Consulate General in Nigeria has said it has been monitoring activities in Bayelsa State ahead of the November 11 governorship election, expecting that it will be peaceful and credible.
The consulate’s Political/Economic Section’s chief, Mike Ervin, stated this, yesterday, during a courtesy visit to Governor Douye Diri at the Government House, Yenagoa.
Ervin said that the Consulate’s delegation was in the state to monitor activities, because the US is a partner of the Nigerian government in the conduct of elections.
He said: “As you well know, the US is a fundamental partner of the Nigerian government in the conduct of elections. We are friends and we learn from one another when it comes to democracy and how democracy can thrive.
“We are also here to see how Bayelsa is experiencing democracy at work. We want to know how things are going in your state and to also give you our good wishes for a peaceful election. We expect that the democratic process reflects the will of the people on November 11.”
Responding, Diri said that his administration is open to partnering with the international community to advance democracy through a free, fair and transparent electoral process in the state. He said his expectation, going into the election, is that the will of the people will prevail and not be truncated by unknown forces.
The Bayelsa helmsman noted that he is in the governorship contest not only because of the constitutional provision, but that he wants his vision and plans for the state to materialise.
Diri, however, expressed concern over security intelligence about his opponents, particularly of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Timipre Sylva, and his role in the crisis bedevilling the Nembe-Bassambiri Community in a bid to subvert the will of the people. He said: “I believe that your coming will motivate us and add to the growth and development of democracy in Nigeria and in our state.
“My government is of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and our key opponents are from the APC and Labour Party (LP). Of course, there are other parties. But what we want, as a government, is a free, fair and transparent electoral process.”
Get the latest news delivered straight to your inbox every day of the week. Stay informed with the Guardian’s leading coverage of Nigerian and world news, business, technology and sports.