The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Bayelsa State, Senator Douye Diri, has alleged that Saturday’s election was rigged.
Senator Diri in a press briefing on Sunday night accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) of conniving with the Nigerian Army to rig the election in some areas. He spoke in the company of the National Chairman of the PDP Campaign Council and Bauchi State Governor, Senator Bala Mohammed and National Vice Chairman of the Party, Emmanuel Ogidi.
The PDP candidate maintained that results collated by the party agents showed that the PDP won the election. Diri said the party had raised alarm about a plot by the APC to use the General Officer Commanding the 6th Division of the Nigerian Army, General Sarham Jamil to supervise the state election.
“Members of the PDP were terrorized and arrested by soldiers on the orders of the General Officer Commanding the 6th Division of the Nigerian Army, General Sarham Jamil,” he alleged.
Diri said some party chieftains were harassed and prevented by the Army operatives from accessing the collation centre in Ogbia. He said in Southern Ijaw, the PDP members who were travelling to their communities for the election were also apprehended by soldiers at Ogboinbiri while their APC counterparts were allowed to go scot-free.
He commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the media for their show of professionalism in the conduct and coverage of the election. Diri, however, urged them to maintain the tempo for the sake of democracy.
He called on the international community and lovers of democracy to prevail on the Nigerian Army to respect the rule of law and for democracy to thrive in Bayelsa and Nigeria in general.
He said: “The collation centre in Ogbia is under siege by the Nigerian Army and as we all know, this is against the laws of our land. It is anathema because the Army has no business in determining who goes into a collation centre.
“Information available to us indicates that the General Officer Commanding, GOC, 6th Division has ordered officers and men from 6 Battalion, 343 Artillery, 5 and 29 Battalions were carrying out certain security functions to withdraw from the venue in Ogbia because they have failed to rig the election in Ogbia for the APC. It is totally unacceptable. For there to be peace, there has to be justice.”