Many core supporters and loyalists of the former minister of state for petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva have expressed anger and disappointment with their leader and have spoken of their non-readiness to work for his electoral success on November 11, when the people of Bayelsa State will be expected to elect a new governor.
Sylva is the candidate of the APC and doubles as the party’s leader in Bayelsa State. Initial signals of anger against him came shortly after he emerged winner of the party’s gubernatorial primaries, especially after he had promised publicly that he would never, again, contest for the office.
Apart from Mr David Lyon who was said to have been generally favoured to pick the party’s ticket, many other loyalists of the former governor have now expressed ill feelings against Sylva.
Some of the loyalists who spoke with TNN said they were no longer ready to give Sylva their support because of what they considered the “sins” of the former minister.
One of them said Sylva was too selfish and never cared about how they were faring. He said throughout the period that Sylva was minister, he never remembered those of them who gave undivided loyalty to him.
The politician, a party leader in his own right, said it was shocking that even though Sylva was not taking his calls and never bothered to return his calls and messages, he still approached and asked him for support to enable him win the November election.
Another party leader who confided in TNN over the telephone noted that the former minister was taking his loyalty for granted and promised to make his anger known on Election Day. He said he had no plans to leave the APC but would do his best to show how angry he was with his benefactor.
TNN observed that most of the top leaders of the party have taken a decision to remain in the APC and work against the party’s candidate. They said the former governor was only returning to those he abandoned for years now that he felt their support would help him win in November.
Ironically, Sylva did not take all the calls to his phone, neither did he respond to messages dropped for him. Also, the state party chairman, Dennis Otiotio did answer our phone calls and did not respond to messages sent to him on Whatsapp.