The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has presented the winner of the November 16th governorship election and candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC) with the certificate of return, affirming that the conduct of the election was peaceful despite complaints from some political parties.
According to INEC, though the fears and concern expressed by key stakeholders were based on past narrative of electoral violence, thuggery, killings and other forms of electoral malpractices, the election held peacefully despite pockets of skirmishes in some areas.
The National Commissioner of INEC for Bayelsa, Edo and Rivers, Mrs. May Agbamuche Mbu, while presenting the certificate of return to Chief David Lyon, said the peaceful conduct of the November 16th election was a collective effort, ‘candidates displayed maturity and it has come to count in the lexicon of Bayelsa politics.’
Also speaking, the State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Pastor Monday Udoh-Tom, said the conduct and outcome of the Bayelsa governorship poll showed that the INEC has done something right in the eyes of the world.
Udoh-Tom, who noted that due to the fears being expressed over the conduct of the election, said he embarked on 14 days fasting and prayer session with a plea for God to ensure a peaceful and violent poll, ‘No one died, no rain disrupted the poll and result was collated peacefully without violence.’
He said the commission ensured adequate funding and logistics arrangement to forestall hitches in the process.
On the threat of flood and other natural threats which were rising waters which went beyond its banks,’ with special thanks to Almighty God, the election days were dry and election held peacefully despite pocket of skirmishes in some areas.’
In his speech, the Bayelsa governor-elect, Chief David Lyon, pointed out that the presentation of the certificate of return is an historical occasion in the political history of Bayelsa state, ‘ first I want to extend my greetings to Bayelsa people who took the pain to decide with their votes as one of the most peaceful election in the state ‘
‘Again, I want to say Bayelsa money is not David Lyon’s money. It is not the money of the deputy governor-elect. It will be used to develop Bayelsa state. Today, we with the APC are signing a contract with Bayelsa people. The contract is to develop Bayelsa state. It is to bring peace to Bayelsa.’
‘I assure you that David Lyon and APC will not disappoint Bayelsa. In the election, we had many contestants, there is no winner or losers. Now it is the time to develop the state because we have lost a lot. I remain grateful to INEC, the security agencies that did a good job for us to record a peaceful election.’
‘When I met with foreign envoys that came,they expressed concern over Southern Ijaw and said Southern Ijaw is volatile. But the election was peaceful. The election was not about David Lyon. If it is not the will of God,it will not happen. Security and development is key.’