Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
A frontline aspirant in the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) governorship primary election in Bayelsa State, Mr Ndutimi Alaibe has declared ahead September 3 election that he is not desperate to be governor.
Alaibe speaking at his residence in Yenagoa in reaction to allegations that he is hell bent on becoming governor said he has continued to be a contender for the governorship election because he loves Bayelsa.
According to him he has had to step down in the past when fellow contenders resort to violence which is against his principles and all what he wants is a process that would be credible for a leader to emerge.
“I am not a desperate politician against what some people think. I have stepped down for various people when it comes to times when people want to run amok with violence. I don’t have anything to gain if the blood of any Bayelsan is lost for me to become governor otherwise I won’t sleep well and that blood would be on me. I have been a victim of such circumstances where I was attacked. I preach non-violence and insist on non-violence with everybody working with me. I tell them not to carry guns to make me governor. I am not interested in that. I am interested that we conduct a free, fair and transparent process that would enable a leader emerged. If a leader emerges I don’t have any choice than to support such leader. Power is God. I won’t force myself on the people. I see myself on a mission to resolve a problem,” he said.
Meanwhile Baylesa State Deputy Governor, Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John Jonah has vowed not to withdraw from the race urging Bayelsans and delegates to disregard “the dangerous rumour” that he has withdrawn from the race.
The Gboribiogha John Jonah Campaign Organisation in a press statement by its publicity secretary, Markson Fefegha said, “the rumour is intended to destabilise our burgeoning support base and distract our well focused ongoing campaign”
The statement read in part: “We, therefore, wish to state categorically and unequivocally that, Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John Jonah (rtd) is still in the governorship race and will never withdraw from the race, no matter the circumstances and will participate in the PDP governorship primaries, come Tuesday, September 03, 2019.
“The right thing to do under the prevailing circumstances is for our revered elder statesmen and leaders of thought in the State to be candid and dispassionate enough to offer wise counsel to whosoever is influencing them to dissuade the Deputy Governor from contesting at this crucial time to consider him instead, the right of first refusal to contest the primary election, being the number two person in the Restoration Administration, given his sterling pedigree and loyalty.
“We wish to implore our teeming supporters and sympathizers, especially the delegates to discountenance the unfounded rumour and continue with all activities aimed at giving our aspirant victory on September 03, 2019.”
However a twist has been introduced into the campaign for delegates votes, as PPD leaders and stakeholders in Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Government Area where Alaibe and Diri hail from have endorsed the latter.
The stakeholders meeting chaired by the Speaker of the Baylesa State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Tonye Isenah unanimously endorsed Diri for what they described as his sterling record of performance in the public service and the effective exploitation of various public offices he has occupied to promote and develop society.
The stakeholders said Diri was the preferred aspirant because Bayelsa needs a experience public figure of tested capacity and experience to build on the eight years of remarkable exploits by Governor Henry Seriake Dickson.
It was stated further that Diri had proven to be a visionary’s leader with a passion for the protection of the general good.
The stakeholders added that Diri’s years as a crusader for Ijaw interest in the Ijaw National Congress, the House of Representatives and the Senate show clearly that he has the will, the courage and capacity to protect the interest of Bayelsa and indeed the Ijaw nation.