The Governor of Bayelsa state, Senator Douye Diri has blamed the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole and Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva for the protests that led to destruction of properties in the state after the Supreme Court declared him governor-elect of the state on February 13.
The governor made the blame on Thursday when he embarked on a tour of the places that were touched during the violent protests that followed the pronouncement of the apex court which disqualified David Lyon as governor-elect as a result of disparities in the certificates of his deputy, Senator Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo.
According to the governor, the statement credited to the APC national chairman on February 13 after the judgement that there would be no government in Bayelsa State on February 14 and Sylva’s statement that the governor of Bayelsa State from February 14 is ‘illegitimate’ triggered the riotous protests that led to wanton destruction of properties worth millions of naira.
Speaking to newsmen at the state owned Gloryland Television which was also affected by the protest turned violence, the governor said “l am tempted not to believe that these people are Nigerians not to talk of being Bayelsans.
“You know it is very easy to destroy and if these are supporters of the APC, what the national chairman of the APC said in Abuja after the Supreme Court which is the highest court in the land has given a ruling, and challenged the ruling of the supreme court that there will be no governor in Bayelsa State, that ignited the riot in the state.
“In Imo state when the Supreme Court delivered a judgement, there were protests, not one or two or three days, they were very peaceful. Not one property was destroyed.
“However, in Bayelsa State it is a different ball game. The APC in the state has always been associated with violence, destruction of lives and property.
“You can recall that two days before the governoship election, l went to Nembe for campaign and we were attacked. We lost about twenty of our members.
“Here on the 13th of February after the apex court had delivered ruling, you now saw this level of brigandage, barbarism and primitivity visited on their own properties. Radio Bayelsa is their own property.
“As if what the national leader of the APC said on the 13th of February was not enough, after I had been sworn-in, the minister for petroleum, after initially calling for calm which was suspicious to some of us, truly being what he was, he came out smoking by declaring that the governor of Bayelsa state is illegitimate.”
The governor, who called on all Bayelsans to work with him for the progress of the state, also visited other areas touched by the rampaging protesters which include the Prof. Azaiki Public Library, former governor Dickson and governor Diri’s houses, judiciary house, PDP state Secretariat, Ekeki Park and others.