Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
Businessman and philanthropist, Mr David Lyon has been declared the winner of the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship primary election for the November 16 poll in Bayelsa State.
But a frontline aspirant and former Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, has rejected the results calling on well-meaning members of the party to disregard the result “purportedly announced.”
According to Sen. Emmanuel Dangana Ocheja, the Chief Collation Officer who announced the result amidst tight security, Lyon polled 42,138 votes to emerge the candidate of the party.
Ocheja noted that the election was free, fair and credible and commended all party members for their peaceful conduct.
Lyon who voted in his ward at Olugbori, Southern Ijaw Local Government Area, expressed confidence that he was going to win and lead the party to victory in the November 16 governorship election.
A breakdown of the result is as follows: David Lyon (42,138) Mrs Dieseye Nsirim Poweigha (1,533) Prince Ebitimi Amgbare (633) Senator Heineken Lokpobiri (571) Prince Preye Aganaba (354).
However, Lokpobiri while rejecting the result said there was no way Lyon would defeat him in any election conducted among APC members in Bayelsa State.
He said the Bayelsa APC governorship election set a record whereby election would start in a hotel room and end in a hotel instead of the party secretariat.
Lokpobiri explained that the results should have been declared LGA by LGA at the party secretariat where the winner would be announced.
“I have been waiting here at the campaign office for such a time that we would be invited to the party secretariat for the announcement of the results. Our teeming supporters in their thousands were there at the party secretariat. The details of what happened is still sketchy but I want to assure you that we would get details of what happened and why the results were announced in a hotel instead of the party secretariat and why the person who is not the returning officer declared the results. We would get more details.
“I appealed to all my supporters to remain calm. If the true results were declared, I know that I would get hundreds of thousands of votes. What happened is a mockery that all the votes put together were less than 45,000. I believe that this direct primary election came with a lot of challenges.
“Please disregard the results announced and wait for the results to be declared by the returning officer who is the governor of Yobe State. I believe the leadership of the party would review it and do the right thing so that we field the appropriate candidate of the party that would ensure victory in the November 16 governorship election.”